Gospel Reflection: Holy Monday
Malvern Minute

 

HOLY WEEK – MARCH 21 – MARCH 27, 2016

Monday, March 21, 2016

 

ISAIAH 42: 1-7Servant of the Lord: JESUS, THE CHRIST

FIRST of the Servant of the Lord oracles

Here is my servant whom I uphold, my chosen one with whom I am pleased.

Upon him I have put my spirit; he shall bring forth justice to the nations.

 He will not cry out, nor shout, nor make his voice heard in the street.

A bruised reed he will not break, and a dimly burning wick he will not quench.

 He will faithfully bring forth justice. He will not grow dim or be bruised until he establishes justice on the earth; the coastlands will wait for his teaching.

 Thus says God, the LORD, who created the heavens and stretched them out,

Who spread out the earth and its produce, Who gives breath to its people and spirit to those who walk on it:

 I, the LORD, have called you for justice; I have grasped you by the hand;

I formed you, and set you as a covenant for the people, a light for the nations,

To open the eyes of the blind, to bring out prisoners from confinement,

and from the dungeon, those who live in darkness.

The Word of the Lord

 

REFLECTION:    If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts!

A PROPER DISPOSITION FOR HOLY WEEK:

FASTING FROM THE NOISE OF THE WORLD

When I was a child we had classes until Wednesday of Holy Week and were off from Holy Thursday until Tuesday of Easter week.  In fact even the kids attending public school were off from school the same days.  Even though it is different today, these days still provide a good opportunity for in-house family retreat time.

All would have to admit that our culture is filled with more noise than ever.  Even churches have been invaded by cell phones.  And not only do the cell phones ring, but people answer them and hold conversations in places that once were thought to be sacred by religion or by social etiquette.  When I was a child people did not answer phones or door bells during the sacred time of family dinner. Times have changed, but not necessarily for the better.

Quiet is essential to good health: spiritually and physically.  I would like to offer some spiritual counsel that I would hope you would seriously consider.  Do your best to make Holy Week a quiet time in your home, and fill the quiet with time for scripture reading, prayer and meditation.  Once we lived very well without internet, email, instant messaging, texting and cell phones.   Try FASTING FROM SOCIAL MEDIA!   If you haven’t fainted so far, consider a family meeting in which everyone would agree to respect each other’s need and desire for a reflective environment … with little, or no noise … using ear phones does not count!

If the family cannot agree to eliminate all noise in the home for a whole week, then consider establishing Grand Silence!   In a monastery and retreat centers like here at Malvern, for the spiritual welfare of the members, certain places and periods of time are designated for silence … no talking, no noise!

Each family can identify its own sacred space: the bed room area, a designated prayer place where the Bible is exposed, and other places you decide.  Sound strange?   Well … it is a practical, down-to-earth, spiritually altering effort at making fasting or sacrifice a real experience.  However, the quiet, the vacuum of noise is not the end in itself, but the means to achieving interior silence for communion with God.  For how can one hear His voice, if we are listening to everyone, and everything else?

Remember: the purpose of spiritual disciplines, Lenten sacrifices, and religious devotions is to enhance one’s communion, attachment to God … that God is not only out there, but in here!  It is with the abiding, conscious presence of God that one can then be transformed, transfigured, converted into the Divine presence for the world, become as we are called to be: the light of the world.

WE BELIEVE, AND THEREFORE SPEAK (2 Corinthians 4:13)

Consider joining the Men and Women of Malvern by deepening your personal relationship with Jesus and your commitment as a disciple through a weekend retreat.  See our website for details: MalvernRetreat.com

 

 

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