1st Reading of the Mass: Prophet Isaiah 50:4-7
The servant of God sees himself with the mission to give comfort to those who are wearied. Like a true disciple, the servant is sensitive to listen to people’s needs. He is aware that in carrying out his mission, he will have to have heavy responsibilities and this will cause him some sufferings and humiliations. However, he knows that the Lord God will come to his help at the time of need. The invitation for us today is to remain alert to the pleading of the voiceless, alienated, the broken-hearted the lonely…and work against the different aspects that dehumanize people; trusting that God will always sustain us with the graces we need as we bring peace, hope, love, forgiveness, and healing among those who are downtrodden.
2nd Reading: Philippians 2: 6-11.
This piece of reading is a reflection on the nature of the mission of Jesus. That is Jesus’ death and resurrection which are interpreted in terms of being enslaved and then made master. In the reading, there is an exhortation of humility and self-service.
Jesus stripped Himself of His dignity as God and took our human form and due to this humility of Jesus, God the Father has raised Jesus to His own dignity of God the Father.
Jesus came to serve and not to be served. He being God, we, His followers are challenged to serve and not to be served. Due to His spirit of service, He has won millions of hearts to live the lifestyle He brought and He Himself lived on earth.
Gospel Reading: Mark: 14: 1-15:47.
The passion narrative is full of revelations. We see how different people responded in various moments. For instance, Peter denied Jesus, Judas betrayed Him, Peter, James, and John did not have the strength to keep awake for an hour while with Him in the garden of Gethsemane. A woman anointed Him with a jar of expensive perfume. The servant girl emphasized that Peter was with Him. The chief priests and scribes looked for a way to arrest Him and have Him put to death. Simon of Cyrene helped Him to carry the cross. The passersby jeered at Him staying safe yourself. Mary, of Magdala, Mary the mother of James and Solome watched from a distance. The crowd shouted crucify Him. The centurion attested that truly He was a son of God. Finally, Joseph of Arimathaea boldly went to Pilate and asked for His body and laid Him in a tomb. Let us take a moment more especially during this Holy week to identify;
Who do I/we relate to within this story and why? What role do I play in this drama of love?
Let us enter Holy week with our minds and hearts wide open to let God do His work of transformation in us and through us.
Reflection: Betty Nakato Religious of the Sacred Heart, Uganda Kenya Province