Thứ Hai, 10 tháng 4, 2017

APRIL 11, 2017 : TUESDAY OF HOLY WEEK

Tuesday of Holy Week
Lectionary: 258

Reading 1IS 49:1-6
Hear me, O islands,
listen, O distant peoples.
The LORD called me from birth,
from my mother's womb he gave me my name.
He made of me a sharp-edged sword
and concealed me in the shadow of his arm.
He made me a polished arrow,
in his quiver he hid me.
You are my servant, he said to me,
Israel, through whom I show my glory.

Though I thought I had toiled in vain,
and for nothing, uselessly, spent my strength,
Yet my reward is with the LORD,
my recompense is with my God.
For now the LORD has spoken
who formed me as his servant from the womb,
That Jacob may be brought back to him
and Israel gathered to him;
And I am made glorious in the sight of the LORD,
and my God is now my strength!
It is too little, he says, for you to be my servant,
to raise up the tribes of Jacob,
and restore the survivors of Israel;
I will make you a light to the nations,
that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.

R. (see 15ab) I will sing of your salvation.
In you, O LORD, I take refuge;
let me never be put to shame.
In your justice rescue me, and deliver me;
incline your ear to me, and save me.
R. I will sing of your salvation.
Be my rock of refuge,
a stronghold to give me safety,
for you are my rock and my fortress.
O my God, rescue me from the hand of the wicked.
R. I will sing of your salvation.
For you are my hope, O Lord;
my trust, O God, from my youth.
On you I depend from birth;
from my mother's womb you are my strength.
R. I will sing of your salvation.
My mouth shall declare your justice,
day by day your salvation.
O God, you have taught me from my youth,
and till the present I proclaim your wondrous deeds.
R. I will sing of your salvation.

Verse Before The Gospel
Hail to you, our King, obedient to the Father;
you were led to your crucifixion like a gentle lamb to the slaughter.

Reclining at table with his disciples, Jesus was deeply troubled and testified,
"Amen, amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me."
The disciples looked at one another, at a loss as to whom he meant.
One of his disciples, the one whom Jesus loved,
was reclining at Jesus' side.
So Simon Peter nodded to him to find out whom he meant.
He leaned back against Jesus' chest and said to him,
"Master, who is it?"
Jesus answered,
"It is the one to whom I hand the morsel after I have dipped it."
So he dipped the morsel and took it and handed it to Judas,
son of Simon the Iscariot.
After Judas took the morsel, Satan entered him.
So Jesus said to him, "What you are going to do, do quickly."
Now none of those reclining at table realized why he said this to him.
Some thought that since Judas kept the money bag, Jesus had told him,
"Buy what we need for the feast,"
or to give something to the poor.
So Judas took the morsel and left at once. And it was night.

When he had left, Jesus said,
"Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him.
If God is glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself,
and he will glorify him at once.
My children, I will be with you only a little while longer.
You will look for me, and as I told the Jews,
'Where I go you cannot come,' so now I say it to you."

Simon Peter said to him, "Master, where are you going?"
Jesus answered him,
"Where I am going, you cannot follow me now,
though you will follow later."
Peter said to him,
"Master, why can I not follow you now? 
I will lay down my life for you."
Jesus answered, "Will you lay down your life for me?
Amen, amen, I say to you, the cock will not crow
before you deny me three times."



Meditation: Betrayal and faltering loyalty to Jesus
Jesus' disciples were put to the test as Jesus prepared to make the final and ultimate sacrifice of his own life for their sake and for all the world. What was different between Peter and Judas? Judas deliberately betrayed his Master while Peter, in a moment of weakness, denied him with an oath and a curse. Judas' act was cold and calculated. Peter, however, never meant to do what he did. He acted impulsively, out of weakness and cowardice. Jesus knew both the strength of Peter's loyalty and the weakness of his resolution. He had a habit of speaking with his heart without thinking through the implications of what he was saying.
Disordered love leads to hurtful desires and wrong deeds
The treachery of Judas, however, is seen at its worst when Jesus makes his appeal by showing special affection to him at his last supper. John says that Satan entered into Judas when he rejected Jesus and left to pursue his evil course. Satan can twist love and turn it into hate. He can turn holiness into pride, discipline into cruelty, affection into complacency. We must be on our guard lest Satan turn us from the love of God and the path which God has chosen for us.
God never withholds his persevering grace and strength to those who cling to him
The Holy Spirit will give us grace and strength in our time of testing. If we submit to Jesus we will walk in the light of his truth and love. If we turn our backs on him we will stumble and fall in the ways of sin and darkness. Are you ready to follow Jesus in his way of the cross?
"Give me, O Lord, a steadfast heart which no unworthy thought can drag downwards; an unconquered heart which no tribulation can wear out; an upright heart which no unworthy purpose may tempt aside. Bestow upon me also, O Lord my God, understanding to know you, diligence to seek you, wisdom to find you, and a faithfulness that may finally embrace you; through Jesus Christ, our Lord."  (Prayer of Thomas Aquinas)
A Daily Quote for LentFight sin and put up with trials, by Augustine of Hippo, 354-430 A.D.
"Your first task is to be dissatisfied with yourself, fight sin, and transform yourself into something better. Your second task is to put up with the trials and temptations of this world that will be brought on by the change in your life and to persevere to the very end in the midst of these things." (excerpt from Commentary on Psalm 59,5) 

TUESDAY OF HOLY WEEK
TUESDAY, APRIL 11, JOHN 13:21-33, 36-38

(Isaiah 49:1-6; Psalm 71)

KEY VERSE: "Amen, Amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me" (v.21).
TO KNOW: During the Passover meal, Jesus made a solemn declaration that one of his own disciples would betray him. Reclining at table (the Greek style of dining of the day), John leaned his head on Jesus' chest in anguish. Just as Jesus reposed in the heart of the Father, the disciple abided in the bosom of the Lord. Although Judas was preparing to betray him, as a last gesture of love Jesus handed him a morsel of bitter herbs dipped in salt water (a symbol of the tears shed by the slaves in Egypt). Judas took the offering and quickly departed. To illustrate Judas' dark deed, John wrote poignantly, "and it was night" (v.30). Jesus warned Peter that he would also betray him by denying knowledge of him. Peter protested that he would lay down his life for his Master, but Jesus knew that Peter would fail him. It was left to Jesus to make this final journey alone.
TO LOVE: Am I able to reconcile with someone whom I have hurt or who has injured me?
TO SERVE: Lord Jesus, forgive me for the many ways I betray your love.

Tuesday 11 April 2017

‘Where I am going you cannot follow me now; you will follow me later.’ John 13:36
In his words to his disciples at the Passover meal, Jesus is giving his final teaching and making his farewells. Peter senses trouble. He wants to know where Jesus is going. He wants to go with him, and wants to lay down his life for Jesus. Jesus knows how enthusiastic Peter can be in faith, but he also knows Peter has to go deeper in the journey of faith. Can I go deeper? Would I deny Jesus? Yes, every time I neglect a person in need, I deny Jesus and I miss an invitation to see the face of Jesus. I lose another chance to experience self-giving love. Forgive me Lord. Let me see you more clearly, follow you more dearly, day by day, until I am called to go where you are going.

ST. STANISLAUS

On April 11, the Catholic Church honors the memory of the 11th-century bishop and martyr St. Stanislaus of Krakow, who died for the faith at the hands of King Boleslaus II.

Canonized in 1253, St. Stanislaus is a beloved patron of the Polish nation and people. In his own country he is commemorated May 8, the date of his death in 1079.

Blessed John Paul II – who was Krakow’s archbishop in the “See of St. Stanislaus” before becoming Pope – paid tribute to him often during his pontificate. In a 2003 letter to the Polish Church, he recalled how St. Stanislaus “proclaimed faith in God to our ancestors and started in them...the saving power of the Passion and Resurrection of Jesus Christ.”

“He taught the moral order in the family based on sacramental marriage. He taught the moral order within the State, reminding even the king that in his actions he should keep in mind the unchanging Law of God.” Through St. Stanislaus, God taught the Polish Pope's homeland to respect “the Law of God and the just rights of every person.”

Born near Krakow in July of 1030, Stanislaus Szczepanowski was the son of Belislaus and Bogna. His parents, members of the nobility, showed great zeal and charity in their practice of the Catholic faith. Their son studied for a time in his own country, and went on to learn theology and canon law in Paris. The death of his parents left him with a large inheritance, which he gave away to the poor.

After his ordination to the priesthood, Stanislaus served Church of Krakow in different pastoral and administrative posts. Following the death of the diocese’s leader, Bishop Lambert Zula, Stanislaus was chosen as his successor in 1071. He did not want the position, but obeyed Pope Alexander II’s order to accept it. Having done so, he proved to be a bold preacher of the Gospel.

This boldness brought him into conflict with Poland’s ruler, King Boleslaus II, who was becoming notorious for his violent and depraved lifestyle. After a series of disputes over his scandalous behavior and other matters, Stanislaus found no success in his efforts to reform the king.

He excommunicated the sovereign – who responded with furious anger, sending henchmen to kill the bishop. When they proved unwilling or unable to do so, Boleslaus took matters into his own hands. He ambushed Stanislaus and struck him down with a sword during his celebration of Mass.

St. Stanislaus was soon acclaimed as a martyr, while Boleslaus II lost his grip on power and left Poland. In later years the fallen monarch is said to have lived in a monastery, repenting of the murder.



LECTIO DIVINA: JOHN 13,21-33.36-38
Lectio Divina: 
 Tuesday, April 11, 2017
Lent Time


1) Opening prayer
Lord our God,
your Son Jesus Christ
had to undergo the humiliation
of being betrayed and denied
by those he called his friends.But he made his suffering and death
into instruments of love and reconciliation.
Make us with him people-for-others,
who accept difficulties, even betrayals
and misunderstanding of our best intentions,
and turn them into sources of life and joy
for those around us.
Keep us faithful to you and to one another
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

2) Gospel Reading - John 13, 21-33.36-38
Having said this, Jesus was deeply disturbed and declared, 'In all truth I tell you, one of you is going to betray me.' The disciples looked at each other, wondering whom he meant. The disciple Jesus loved was reclining next to Jesus; Simon Peter signed to him and said, 'Ask who it is he means,' so leaning back close to Jesus' chest he said, 'Who is it, Lord?' Jesus answered, 'It is the one to whom I give the piece of bread that I dip in the dish.' And when he had dipped the piece of bread he gave it to Judas son of Simon Iscariot. At that instant, after Judas had taken the bread, Satan entered him. Jesus then said, 'What you are going to do, do quickly.'
None of the others at table understood why he said this. Since Judas had charge of the common fund, some of them thought Jesus was telling him, 'Buy what we need for the festival,' or telling him to give something to the poor. As soon as Judas had taken the piece of bread he went out. It was night. When he had gone, Jesus said: Now has the Son of man been glorified, and in him God has been glorified. If God has been glorified in him, God will in turn glorify him in himself, and will glorify him very soon. Little children, I shall be with you only a little longer. You will look for me, and, as I told the Jews, where I am going, you cannot come.
Simon Peter said, 'Lord, where are you going?' Jesus replied, 'Now you cannot follow me where I am going, but later you shall follow me.' Peter said to him, 'Why can I not follow you now? I will lay down my life for you.' 'Lay down your life for me?' answered Jesus. 'In all truth I tell you, before the cock crows you will have disowned me three times.'

3) Reflection
• This is the third day of Holy Week. The texts of the Gospel of these days place before us the terrible facts which will lead to the imprisonment and condemnation of Jesus. The texts not only present the decisions of the religious and civil authority against Jesus, but also the betrayal and the negotiations of the disciples which rendered possible for the authority to arrest Jesus and contributed enormously to increase the suffering of Jesus.
• John 13, 21: The announcement of the betrayal. After having washed the feet of the disciples (Jn 13, 2-11) and having spoken about the obligation that we have of washing each other’s feet (Jn 13, 12-16), Jesus is profoundly touched. And it is no wonder. He was fulfilling that gesture of service and total gift of self, while at his side one of the disciples was planning how to betray him that same night. Jesus expresses his emotion saying: “In all truth I tell you one of you is going to betray me!” He does not say: “Judas will betray me”, but “one of you”. It is one of his group who will betray him.
• John 13, 22-25: The reaction of the disciples. The disciples are frightened. They did not expect that declaration, that is, that one of them would be the traitor. Peter makes a sign to John to ask Jesus which of the twelve would be the traitor. This is a sign that they did not know one another well, they could not succeed in understanding who could be the traitor. A sign, that is, that the friendship among them had not as yet reached the same transparency that Jesus had with them (cf. Jn 15, 15). John reclined near Jesus and asked him: “Who is it?”
• John 13, 26-30: Jesus indicates Judas. Jesus says: It is the one to whom I give the piece of bread that I dip in the dish. He took a piece of bread, dips it in the cup and hands it over to Judas. This was a common and normal gesture which the participants at a supper used to do among themselves. And Jesus tells Judas: “What you are going to do, do quickly!” Judas had charge of the common fund. He was in charge of buying things and of giving the alms to the poor. This is why no one perceived anything special in the gesture and in the words of Jesus. In this description of the announcement of the betrayal is evoked the Psalm in which the psalmist complains about the friend who betrays him: “Even my trusted friend on whom I relied, who shared my table takes advantage of me” (Ps 41, 10; cf. Ps 55, 13-15). Judas becomes aware that Jesus knew everything (cf. Jn 13, 18). But even knowing it, he does not change his mind but keeps the decision to betray Jesus. This is the moment in which the separation between Judas and Jesus takes place. John says at this moment Satan entered him. Judas rises and leaves. He places himself at the side of the enemy (Satan). John comments: “”It was night”. It was dark.
• John 13, 31-33: The glorification of Jesus begins. It is as if history had waited for this moment of separation between light and darkness. Satan (the enemy) and darkness entered into Judas when he decides to carry out what he was planning. In that moment the light was made in Jesus who declares: “Now the son of man has been glorified, and in him God has been glorified also. 32 If God has been glorified in him, God will in turn glorify him in himself, and will glorify him very soon!” Everything which will happen from now on will be in the regressive way. The decisions had already been taken by Jesus (Jn 12, 27-28) and now by Judas. The facts follow one another hastily. And, Jesus announces it: “Little children, I will be with you only a little longer. You will look for me, and, as I told the Jews, where I am going you cannot come”. There is little time left before the Passover.
• John 13, 34-35: The new commandment. Today’s Gospel omits these two verses on the new commandment of love, and begins to speak about the announcement of the denial of Peter.
• John 13, 36-38: Announcement of the denial of Peter. Together with the betrayal of Judas, the Gospel also speaks of the denial of Peter. These are the two facts which contribute the most to Jesus suffering and pain. Peter says that he is ready to give his life for Jesus. Jesus recalls and reminds him of reality: “You are ready to lay down your life for me? In all truth I tell you, before the cock crows you will have disowned me three times”. Mark had written: “Before the cock crows twice, you will have disowned me three times” (Mk 14, 30). Everybody knows that the cock crows rapidly. When in the morning the first cock begins to sing, almost at the same time all the cocks crow together. Peter is more rapid in his denial than the cock in crowing.

4) Personal questions
• Judas, the friend, becomes the traitor. Peter, the friend, denies Jesus. And I?
• I place myself in Jesus’ situation and I think: how does he face the denial and the betrayal, the contempt and the exclusion?

5) Concluding Prayer
You are my hope, Lord,
my trust, Yahweh, since boyhood.
On you I have relied since my birth,
since my mother's womb you have been my portion,
the constant theme of my praise. (Ps 71,5-6)