Message of the Week

My God, My God, Why Have You Abandoned Me?

Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord LentPalm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord

This year, we hear the Passion from the gospel of Mark. One thing unique about this reading is the emphasis on Jesus being abandoned by his disciples.  First, the leaders of the disciples cannot even support Jesus in his agony in the garden: They fall asleep, three times. Then there is Judas, who seeks out the chief priests to make a deal with them, Peter, who denies Jesus three times, and the crowds who cried, “Hosanna!” a few days before, now call for him to be crucified.

What does this tell us?  With friends like these, who needs enemies?  No, the point is that Jesus died specifically for these people, not because they were once friends, but because they were sinners, who needed Jesus.  When we find ourselves in sin, when we think that everything we do is wrong, or when we think we can’t possibly deserve to be loved by God—that is when God can help us, if we just stop hating ourselves and start loving and trusting the Lord.  It is not the time to pretend we have avoided the big sins, or to brag about some of the good we may have done.  Instead, simply agree that you need his help.  God loves sinners who know they need his forgiveness and don’t deserve it.

But maybe you have already been forgiven and wonder what’s next.  Remember the ones you would not expect to support Jesus: the centurion proclaiming him Son of God, Joseph giving him a burial place, the women who followed Jesus.  These were people who did not claim to be worthy, just did what they could to show their love.  Ask Jesus each morning when you wake up, “What can I do for you today?” and do what you can.
Tom Schmidt, Diocesan Publications


Christ Indeed from Death is Risen, Our New Life Obtaining. Alleluia!

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