FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD
March 28, 2021
WORD of the DAY
PASSION OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST
When the centurion who stood facing him saw how he breathed his last he said, “Truly this man was the Son of God!” (Mark 15: 39)
How shall I live this Word?
Palm Sunday inaugurates Holy Week, the ‘Authentic Week’ (as the Ambrosian tradition calls it), in which we celebrate the mystery of our salvation. The Gospel of Mark that has guided us in this Lent has always asked us this question in filigree: “But who is Jesus? Who is Jesus for you?” We are at a turning point to complete this answer, already anticipated in part by Peter: “You are the Christ” (8:29). It will be the Roman centurion with his profession of faith under the cross “Truly this man was the Son of God” (15:39) to say something more about the identity of Jesus! Why on earth does this soldier who has the task of carrying out the executions of the condemned, a pagan, to say these words? What is shocking, is that he who has no knowledge of the Jewish religion and who is part of another culture, gets to say these things? What do you see in the disfigured face of Christ, in His tortured body, tormented by scourges, traversed by agony, stripped and bloodied that has to do with divinity? “Seeing him die in that way”! Jesus certainly disconcerted him by how He lives the passion; He does not offer resistance, He does not respond to accusations, to provocations. He still knows how to think of others, ‘forgives’, remains master of Himself and does not run away. He goes as far as after all, without resentment, or rancor, or desire for revenge. On His lips there is no curse, no claim of power. Perhaps this affects the centurion and convinces him that what he sees cannot be a human attitude. A love so great that nothing stops it; a mercy that goes beyond even the injustice that devastates and humiliates, cannot be experienced by a human, it is something greater than him. Here he comes to recognize the Face of the Son of God in weakness and fragility, in suffering, meekness and humility lived for love.
Lord you have given me in your passion a lifestyle that becomes transparency of the Father’s presence. It is not the words that testify to you, but how much, for my brothers and sisters, I know how to live and how I know how to live in meekness and humility. Help me to know how to live my every day in this way, immersed in Your love. AMEN!!
The Voice of Pope Francis, General Audience 27 March 2013
Living Holy Week means entering ever more into the logic of God, into the logic of the Cross, which is not first of all that of pain and death, but that of love and the gift of self that brings life. It is entering into the logic of the Gospel. To follow, to accompany Christ, to remain with him requires ‘going out’, going out. To come out of oneself, from a tired and routine way of living the faith, from the temptation to close oneself in one’s own schemes that end up closing the horizon of God’s creative action. God went out of himself to come among us, He placed His tent among us to bring us His mercy which saves and gives hope. We too, if we want to follow Him and stay with Him, we must not be satisfied with staying in the pen of the ninety-nine sheep, we must ‘go out’, look for the lost sheep.
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.sanbiagio.org email@example.com Blog: livingscripture.wordpress.com Comment by Sr. Monica Gianoli, FMA