Friday, April 19, 2019
Reflect: One thing we can take away from this Lent and from our encounter with the Passion of Christ is that at the heart of every sacrifice is love. When we freely sacrifice something during Lent, the goal is to do it for the love of God. How can we continue to lovingly sacrifice once Lent is over?
One way is to pay attention to the people in your life, while another way is to stand in solidarity with those who suffer while working to ease their burden.
Pray: Pray the Stations of the Cross today.
Act: Attend the Good Friday liturgy in your parish today. (No Mass is celebrated on Good Friday.)
As Jesus neared the end of His public life, the opposition of the Jewish leaders became more violent and their desire to kill Him more determined. Our Lord, however, continued to teach in the temple, where large crowds came to hear Him. The admiration of the people intensified the hatred of the priests, and they planned to ensnare Jesus in His speech that they might have grounds for condemnation. While His enemies plotted His downfall, Our Lord spent the night in prayer on the Mount of Olives. The contrast between the character of Christ and that of His enemies could not be more pronounced. Yielding to base passion, they were openly seeking the death of the Messiah. Jesus, on the contrary, in the spirit of generous charity, was spending His days in teaching and His nights in prayer. Does our conduct in difficult circumstances resemble that of Christ? When we are unjustly accused, criticized, or condemned, do we calmly continue our work and have recourse to God in prayer? Perhaps we seek vengeance upon those who oppose us by wishing them evil or persuading others to despise and condemn them. Let us leave our reputation in the hands of God and imitate Christ's efforts to benefit those who hated and condemned Him.