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Wednesday, March 31, 1999

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Holy Week

Isaiah 50:4-9
Psalm 69:8-10, 21-22, 31, 33-34
Matthew 26:14-25

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jesus loves judas

"Judas, His betrayer, spoke: 'Surely it is not I, Rabbi?' Jesus answered, 'It is you who have said it.' " —Matthew 26:25

During Holy Week, the Church calls us to look at Judas, Jesus' betrayer, so that we will recognize the Judas within us and repent. At the liturgies on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday of Holy Week, we read from the Bible about Judas.

Jesus loved Judas. Even when Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss, Jesus called Judas His friend (Mt 26:50). At the Last Supper, Jesus gave Judas a select morsel of food (Jn 13:26). Jesus did not embarrass Judas when He announced that one of the apostles would betray Him, for when Judas left the Last Supper, some of the other apostles thought Judas was going to "buy what was needed for the feast, or to give something to the poor" (Jn 13:29). Jesus loved Judas so much that He did not correct him when he was stealing from the common purse (Jn 12:6) and did correct him when Judas criticized Mary of Bethany (Jn 12:7).

Jesus loves each one of us with tenderness and mercy. He sees the Judas in each of us, convicts us of our sins, and calls us to repentance so that we will receive His mercy. Jesus loved Judas, but Judas did not receive His love. Jesus also loves each of us. Will we receive His love or, as with Judas, will His death for us be in vain?

Prayer:  Father, You are Love (1 Jn 4:8, 16). I decide to live in Your love (Jn 15:9).

Promise:  "The Lord God has given me a well-trained tongue, that I might know how to speak to the weary a word that will rouse them. Morning after morning He opens my ear that I may hear." —Is 50:4

Praise:  Jesus used a grandchild's bout with serious illness to evangelize an entire family.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, July 23, 1998

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 27, 1998