Skip the Drama, Stay with Momma

"But I shall show you a still more excellent way" 1Cor12

Pope Benedict XVI's Holy Thursday Homily →

His words are BEAUTIFUL. I read this in mind with everything for which I fight. “it is not my will- MY PLEASURE, MY CHOICE, MY BODY- but Your will, o God.”

"The stance of Adam was: not what you, O God, have desired; rather, I myself want to be a god. This pride is the real essence of sin. We think we are free and truly ourselves only if we follow our own will. God appears as the opposite of our freedom. We need to be free of him – so we think – and only then will we be free. This is the fundamental rebellion present throughout history and the fundamental lie which perverts life. When human beings set themselves against God, they set themselves against the truth of their own being and consequently do not become free, but alienated from themselves. We are free only if we stand in the truth of our being, if we are united to God. Then we become truly “like God” – not by resisting God, eliminating him, or denying him. In his anguished prayer on the Mount of Olives, Jesus resolved the false opposition between obedience and freedom, and opened the path to freedom. Let us ask the Lord to draw us into this “yes” to God’s will, and in this way to make us truly free. Amen."

Easter Triduum →

Tonight, on Holy Thursday,  begins the Easter Triduum.  This evening is called Maundy Thursday because it is when we recall Jesus washing the disciples’ feet and it is the Vigil of Good Friday (when we recall the Lord’s Passion).

The Holy Triduum is- to me -the most spiritually and emotionally moving three days of the year.
Our Bible readings recall Jesus washing his disciples’ feet.  
WHY on earth would God stoop to wash the feet of a “wretch like me”?  Because he loves. He loves ME. and all who follow Him.  He calls us to serve others just as he did for his disciples.  

So, in the Catholic church, and in many other Christian churches, we recall this humbling sign of love our God served us with.  

In the evening, during the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, usually after the Homily, Catholic priests all over the world, wash the feet of (usually) 12 parishioners (church members).  

The people chosen can be anyone, but normally they try to pick those who represent the different parts of our community: teachers, healthcare workers, government officials, new members or those seeking full communion with the Catholic church (baptism or confirmation) etc.

This is a powerful thing to witness- watching our priest bent over, washing the feet of each person.  Often I see him sweating as he takes care to wash and dry the feet of each member.  I’ve never had my feet washed, but I’d assume it’s even more powerful to experience, watching a holier person than myself wash my sinning feet! Just imagine if we were Simon Peter! 

"Master, are you going to wash my feet?"
Jesus answered and said to him,
"What I am doing, you do not understand now,
but you will understand later.”
Peter said to him, “You will never wash my feet.”
Jesus answered him,
"Unless I wash you, you will have no inheritance with me."
Simon Peter said to him,
"Master, then not only my feet, but my hands and head as well."
Jesus said to him,
"Whoever has bathed has no need except to have his feet washed,
for he is clean all over;
so you are clean, but not all.”
For he knew who would betray him;
for this reason, he said, “Not all of you are clean.”
John 13:6-11 


What a beautiful way to enter into the Easter season!  

I write of Holy Week hoping to remind us that Easter is not just another humdrum holiday.  
Like, oh, I’m just going along, doing my egg-painting and candy-buying and OOP! It’s Easter! All of the sudden! And the next day we are throwing away our eggs and candy wrappers and carrying on like nothing happened but a lot of eating and egg-hunting.
 No, that would be to cheapen what Easter is!  Easter is much deeper than that!  
Of course we celebrate with family and eat yummy food- we just spent 40 days in the desert!  BUT…
Lent- the 40 days before this week are a time of preparation- of sacrifice, repentance, service and personal reflection. This week is the INTENSE and final preparation.
It, just like Christmas, is not just some day that passes by.  It is a season!   

If you didn’t know this, that’s okay- you know now! And we continue to celebrate Easter, the resurrection of Jesus Christ our King every day, in each Mass, with joy and faith in our hearts!  Join and participate!  HERE is another great resource if anyone is interested to know more.

The above link gives the Church’s Bible readings for tonight’s Mass.  
Here is a piece from  John 13:12-15


"So when he had washed their feet
and put his garments back on and reclined at table again,
he said to them, “Do you realize what I have done for you?
You call me ‘teacher’ and ‘master,’ and rightly so, for indeed I am.
If I, therefore, the master and teacher, have washed your feet,
you ought to wash one another’s feet.
I have given you a model to follow,
so that as I have done for you, you should also do.”

Bible Readings for Holy Tuesday →

Today is Holy Tuesday.  

"The Catholic church makes her people in a constant state of guilt.  That’s not healthy!" 

[“God created us without us.  But he did not will to save us without us” (St. Augustine) To receive His mercy, we must admit our faults. “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (John 8-9)

Blessed John Paul II said, “Conversion requires convincing of sin; it includes the interior judgement of conscience, and this, being a proof of the action of the Spirit of truth in man’s inmost being, becomes at the same time the start of a new grant of grace and love:

"Receive the Holy Spirit." Thus in this "convincing concerning sin" we discover a DOUBLE gift: the gift of the truth of conscience and the gift of the certainty of redemption.  The Spirit of truth is the Consoler."]

(CCC, 1847 & 48)
 

In simpler words, the Catholic Church encourages us to form our conscience: constantly checking and rechecking how we act and to ponder if it is in the Christian spirit of love that we are called to seek! We are merely human, after all.

   If we feel guilty, it is because we are not fulfilling our Christian calling to conversion, grace and redemption; which will ultimately lift the guilt and anxiety associated with sin!

   We should listen to and form our conscience, not shrug it off and blame an authority figure/s for making us “feel bad”.  

Today’s Bible readings are: Is 49:1-6, Ps 71:1-2, 3-4a, 5ab-6ab, 15 And 17, & Jn 13:21-33, 36-38.


Yesterday was Holy Monday, and I never got to post, though I did on FB. Here’s what I wrote:

 ”Did you know that the Catholic Church holds Mass/service EVERY DAY of the year (except Good Friday)? Did you know that in the span of 3 years, the Catholic church reads the ENTIRE Bible to her congregation?

Today is Holy Monday! This is part of today’s Gospel reading:
"Six days before Passover Jesus came to Bethany,
where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead.
They gave a dinner for him there, and Martha served,
while Lazarus was one of those reclining at table with him.
Mary took a liter of costly perfumed oil
made from genuine aromatic nard
and anointed the feet of Jesus and dried them with her hair;
the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil.”John 12:1-3

(the entire Gospel reading is 1-11)