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Good Friday

April 10, 2020

Friday of the Passion of the Lord

Good Friday

April 10, 2020

Deacon Anthony J. Cincotta

Assistant Director for Retreat Ministry

 

Book of the Prophet Isaiah 52:13-53:12

Psalm 31

Letter of Saint Paul to the Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:7-9

The Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John 18:1-19:42

 

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times” represent the first lines of Charles Dickens classic, “A Tale of Two Cities.”  The readings for today’s Service are a tale of two kingdoms.  The readings and prayers center on remembering something very good, the last hours of the Christ.

Much has been said about what is “good” about Good Friday.  I believe we can each personalize the “good” for what it means for each one of us.  For me the “goodness” of this day is to be able to reflect on Jesus’ compassion within His own “Passion.”

We can begin with His “Agony in the Garden.”  Jesus said, “My soul is sorrowful even to death.”  Despite His sorrow and distress He shows compassion with Peter, James and John whom He has asked to pray with Him, but they could not stay awake – even for one hour.

He showed His compassion for Judas who even after betraying Him and addressed Him as “friend.   

In Luke’s Passion narrative Jesus show’s compassion as He heals the ear of the slave that was cut off by Simon Peter.

Then, after enduring a kangaroo court, a brutal scourging, mockery and abuse, He is led out to be crucified.  In spite of His torment and suffering His compassion continues.  I believe He smiled at Simon of Cyrene as Simon took the weight of the cross from His shoulders.  He recognized Veronica who had the courage to maneuver around the Roman guards to wipe His bloody face with her vail.  He actually stopped and spoke to the women of Jerusalem who wept at His feet.  I wonder if the Roman troops thought that they were loosing control of the crowd at this time.  In reality, they were never in control, were they?

My sisters and brothers we are to give praise on “Good Friday” as we are encouraged, as Jesus did, to take up our heroic lives, becoming servants to His Holy Word.   Even though we may be struggling during the Coronavirus pandemic, because of our Lord Jesus it is “the best of times.”   

Five Questions of the Day:

  • Are we compassionate when we are tired, hungry or thirsty, the way Jesus was?
  • Do we have patience for those who do not understand us, the way Jesus was?
  • Do we forgive those who trespass against us, the way Jesus did?
  • Do we forgive those who slander us or destroy our reputation, like Jesus did?
  • Do we give comfort to others in their distress, the way Jesus does?

Prayer:  “Praise to you Jesus Christ, King of endless glory!”  (Gospel Acclamation)

Please continue to pray for the victims of the Coronavirus and for all who are affected by this unprecedented pandemic.

Prosit

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