Category Archives: Lent & Holy Week

Fourth Sunday of Lent

Today in the Novus Ordo Mass for the Fourth Sunday of Lent (Laetare Sunday) there is a distinct the of light. In contrast to the darkness of sin and death, light illumines the soul, wipes out the shadows, it is curative, and reveals that which is previously concealed. Theologically we follow what is revealed in sacred Scripture that Jesus is the Light of the Nations. Our enduring prayer ought to be the Father: send us the grace of Light, allow us to receive the Light of your Son, Jesus.

St. John Paul II once said: “The man born blind represents the man marked by sin, who wishes to know the truth about himself and his own destiny, but is impeded by a congenital malady. Only Jesus can cure him: He is “the light of the world” (John 9:5). By entrusting oneself to him, every human being, spiritually blind from birth, has the possibility of ‘coming to the light’ again, that is, to supernatural life.“

Abstaining during Lent

Meme by John the BlunderWorker

Lent is a time for change

The Great Fast is a time for change. We try to spend more time focused on how to please God and others. When things take us away from God, we can sin. We need to confess our sins to God and change the things that lead us to sin. This is called “repentance.”

In the Liturgy we pray “that the rest of our lives may be spent in peace and repentance.” We do that by learning more about the ways of God and then putting them into practice in our lives. 

When we think about God’s Commandments we are on the first step to repentance. When we were baptized the priest asked us to renounce Satan and his sinful ways. We promised to serve Christ the Son of God in faith and in truth. When we forget these promises, we sin. But the Lord never forgets His promise to us: “I am with you always, even to the end of the world.”

If we have fallen into sin we can repent and God will raise us up because He is always with us.

QUICK FACTS &THOUGHTS:

• In the Ten Commandments which God gave through Moses the first three concern life with God. Find them in your Bible or prayerbook.
• Do you honor God by praying to Him every day? By not using His name as a swear word? By sharing in the Liturgy every Sunday?
• The rest of the Commandments teach us to respect others. What are these Commandments? • How do you treat your parents? Are you violent with others? Do you take what belongs to others? Do you envy them for what they have?
• In the New Commandment which God gave through Christ we are called to love one another as God loves us. What do you do to show that you love God? That you love others?
• Prepare to go to Confession by loving God and others more during the Great Fast.

(Living with Christ Great Lent at Home)

Maundy Thursday

MandatumIn John 13:34-35 we read: I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another. This is how all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

“Jesus represents the whole of his saving ministry in one symbolic act” ….It “signifies the whole of Jesus’ saving ministry”…”this humble gesture expressing the entire ministry of Jesus’ life and death…”

(J. Ratzinger, Jesus of Nazareth, p. 57, 72, 74; see “The Washing of the Feet” pp 53-75)

Spy Wednesday

Judas kisses JesusWe call today Spy Wednesday (the Wednesday of Holy Week) because it is the day on which the gospel reading for Mass (Matthew 26:14-25) is the one which speaks of Judas Iscariot acts as a spy for the Sanhedrin. The act of spying earned Judas 30 pieces of silver and thus he betrayed Jesus.

Pope Benedict once said, “Judas is neither a master of evil nor the figure of a demoniacal power of darkness but rather a sycophant who bows down before the anonymous power of changing moods and current fashion. But it is precisely this  anonymous power that crucified Jesus, for it was anonymous voices that cried, “Away with him! Crucify him!”

In another place the emeritus Pope wrote:

“His second tragedy — after the betrayal — is that he can no longer believes in forgiveness. His remorse turns into despair. Now he sees only himself and his darkness; he no longer sees the light of Jesus, which can illumine and overcome the darkness. He shows us the wrong type of remorse: the type that is unable to hope, that sees only its own darkness, the type that is destructive and in no way authentic. Genuine remorse is marked by the certainty of hope born of faith in the superior power of the light that was made flesh in Jesus.” (Jesus of Nazareth: Holy Week, 69)

Let us pray as Saint Paul said: “At the name of Jesus every knee should bend…to the glory of God the Father.”

 

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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