< <  

Friday, April 2, 2004

  > >

St. Francis of Paola

Jeremiah 20:10-13
Psalm 18:2-7
John 10:31-42

View Readings
Similar Reflections

what are you doing to jesus?

They "again reached for rocks to stone Him." —John 10:31

Wednesday in the daily Scripture readings we heard Jesus say: "You are trying to kill Me" (Jn 8:37). Yesterday we heard: "They picked up rocks to throw at Jesus, but He hid Himself and slipped out of the temple precincts" (Jn 8:59). Today we hear: "The Jews again reached for rocks to stone Him" (Jn 10:31) and "They again tried to arrest Him" (Jn 10:39). Tomorrow we hear from Caiaphas, the high priest, " 'You have no understanding whatever! Can you not see that it is better for you to have one man die [for the people] than to have the whole nation destroyed?' (He did not say this on his own. It was rather as high priest for that year that he prophesied that Jesus would die for the nation)" (Jn 11:49-51). On Passion (Palm) Sunday, we will hear of Jesus' death on the cross. Obviously, many people had a persistent desire to hurt and kill Jesus.

This continues to the present day. Those who sin against the Lord "are crucifying the Son of God for themselves and holding Him up to contempt" (Heb 6:6). We can either be part of the eternal worship of Jesus enthroned in heaven (see Rv 5:12ff) or of the continuing rejection of Jesus through our sins. When we hear the Passion read on Sunday or on Good Friday, we will be hearing about ourselves. We will face our similarity with someone. Will we resemble the betraying Judas, the denying Peter, or the unfaithful fearful apostles? Or we will see our similarity with Nicodemus in his repentance, Mary in her supreme love, or the centurion in his profession of faith?

Jesus is alive and loving us personally. We are responding to His love — whether we admit it or not. We are rejecting Jesus' love or loving Him in return. Love Jesus always and forever.

Prayer:  Father, I repent of any ways in which I have physically or emotionally abused God, Jesus.

Promise:  "He has rescued the life of the poor." —Jer 20:13

Praise:  St. Francis attracted others to his religious way of life by his prophetic austerity and charity.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, October 9, 2003

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 14, 2003