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Devotion of The Seven Last Words of Christ – The Sixth Word – 30 March – Good Friday 2018

Devotion of The Seven Last Words of Christ – The Sixth Word – 30 March – Good Friday 2018

The Seven Last Words of Christ

The Seven Last Words of Christ refer, not to individual words but to the final seven phrases that Our Lord uttered as He hung on the Cross.   These phrases were not recorded in a single Gospel but are taken from the combined accounts of the four Gospels.   Greatly revered, these last words of Jesus have been the subject of many books, sermons and musical settings.

“Like a bridegroom, Christ went forth from His chamber ….
He came to the marriage-bed of the Cross
and there, in mounting it, He consummated His marriage.
And when He perceived the sighs of the creature,
He lovingly gave Himself up
to the torment, in place of His bride
and joined Himself to her forever.”

St Augustine (354-430) – Sermo Suppositus 120like a bridgegroom - it is consumated - st augustine - good friday - the sixth word - 30 march 2018

” In John’s account, Jesus’ last words are: “It is finished!” (John 19:30).
In the Greek text, this word (tetélestai) points back to the very beginning of the Passion narrative, to the episode of the washing of the feet, which the evangelist introduces by observing that Jesus loved His own “to the end (télos)” (John 13:1). This “end,” this ne plus ultra of loving, is now attained in the moment of death.
He has truly gone right to the end, to the very limit and even beyond that limit.
He has accomplished the utter fullness of love – He has given Himself.”

Pope Benedict XVI

The Sixth Word

“It is consummated.” (John 19:30)

Translation is risky because it always involves some interpretation.   So how is this sixth word of Christ on the Cross (Jn 19:30) properly rendered into English:   “It is finished” (as in “done,” “over with”); “it is completed” (with a less fatalistic ring to it); or, “it is consummated” (in the sense of “brought to fulfillment”)?   The correct choice requires a knowledge of the total Gospel of John, to which we must now turn.

The Johannine Jesus is wholly focused on His hour – the moment of glory. It cannot be hastened, as He had to remind His Mother: “My hour has not yet come” (Jn 2:4).   Nor can or should it be forestalled:  “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. . . . My soul is troubled now yet what should I say – Father, save me from this hour?   But it was for this that I came to this hour. Father, glorify your name” (Jn 12:23, 27-28).

Now, if most people were asked when Jesus’ hour of glory began, they would probably say Easter morning.   But John would disagree.   The Lord, according to this Evangelist, began His hour of glory in His Passion, when He freely consented to the Father’s plan for Him.

The Jesus we meet in John is the pre-existent Word (Jn 1:1-14) – always in control of His own destiny, never the helpless victim of either envious Jewish authorities or sadistic Roman soldiers.   Death comes when He is ready and not a minute sooner:  “The Father loves me for this: that I lay down my life to take it up again.   No one takes it from me; I lay it down freely.   I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it up again” (Jn 10:17-18).

And so it is that Jesus announces (even proclaims) that the hour of His death has come, proving correct the ironic inscription over His head (Jn 19:19).   He is, in fact, never more a King than from the throne of His Cross.   In His death, the work of salvation is finished or, as the original Greek implies, the end or purpose is accomplished.

No morbid preoccupation with death here, for death (and especially this death) is the gateway to life.   No room for the Angst of the existentialists of another era.   Death is not the end, as common parlance understands it:  Death is The End, as Aristotle and Aquinas would have us ponder the word – the goal toward which reality struggles for fulfilment. It is in the light of this truth that Jesus’ assertion makes the most sense:  “And I – once I am lifted up from earth – will draw all things to myself” (Jn 12:32).

Dying, however, is not an end in itself.   In the very act of dying, Jesus did one thing more – He “delivered over His spirit” (Jn 19:30).   It is significant that John does not say that He “gave up” His spirit but “delivered over” (as in “gave forth”).

Thus, we inquire, What is meant by “spirit”?   Surely a play on words is intended, for spirit means “life principle” or “breath” but also spirit as in “Holy Spirit.”   Interestingly, it is only in “giving up” His own life principle that He can “give over” the Holy Spirit.

To whom is that spirit delivered?   First of all, His earthly life is given over to the Father, Who seals it all with the Resurrection. Second, in fulfilment of John 7:39, He gives His Spirit to the faithful remnant, Mary and John, at the foot of the Cross.   Which is to say that He gives His spirit to us, His Church, represented in glory’s hour by the Church’s Mother and the Church’s first son.

That deliverance of the Spirit is achieved proleptically here, by way of a sure promise, only fully actualised after the Resurrection.   However, time does not matter;  in fact, eternity has taken over in the hour of glory, so that everything coalesces into a marvellous unity:  Death, Resurrection, communication of the Spirit, birth of the Church.

Ignominy and triumph meet at the crossroads of Calvary in the hour of glory.   The Saviour knows this and that is why He can declare so majestically: “It is consummated.”… Fr Stravinskas

Prayer of Abandonment to God’s Providence

Lord, Your Cross is high and uplifted;
I cannot mount it in my own strength.
You have promised:
“I, when I am lifted up from the earth,
I will draw all to Myself.”
Draw me, then, from my sins to repentance,
from darkness to faith,
from the flesh to the spirit,
from coldness to ardent devotion,
from weak beginnings to a perfect end,
from smooth and easy paths,
if it be Your will, to a higher and holier way,
from fear to love,
from earth to heaven,
from myself to You.
And as You have said:
“No man can come to Me,
except the Father, who sent Me, draw him,”
give unto me the Spirit Whom the Father hath sent in Your Name,
that in Him and through Him,
I being wholly changed,
may hasten to You
and go out no more for ever.
Amen
(From a Prayer a Day for Lent – 1923)THE SIXTH WORD -JOHN 19 230- THE SEVEN LAST WORDS OF CHRIST - THE DEVOTION - 30 MARCH 2018

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Thought for the Day – 30 March 2018 – Good Friday of the Passion of the Lord “Behold the Man” By Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman (1801-1890)

Thought for the Day – 30 March 2018 – Good Friday of the Passion of the Lord

“Behold the Man”

Part two
By Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman (1801-1890)

“I see the figure of a man, whether young or old I cannot tell.   He may be fifty, or he may be thirty. …..CONTINUED HERE – 20 February 2018, Tuesday of the First Week of Lent) https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2018/02/20/thought-for-the-day-20-february-2018-tuesday-of-the-first-week-of-lent/a-hand-was-lifted-up-against-the-face-of-christ-john-henry-newman-20-feb-2018

Continued:

“O injured Lord, what can I say?   I am very guilty concerning You, my brother;  and I shall sink in sullen despair if You do not raise me.   I cannot look on You;  I shrink from You;  I throw my arms round my face;  I crouch to the earth.   Satan will pull me down if You do not take pity.   It is terrible to turn to You;  but oh, turn me and so shall I be turned.

It is a purgatory to endure the sight of You, the sight of myself – I most vile, You most holy.   Yet make me look once more on You whom I have so incomprehensibly affronted, for Your countenance is my only life, my only hope and health lies in looking on You whom I have pierced.   So I put myself before You;  I look on You again;  I endure the pain in order to receive the purification.

O my God, how can I look You in the face when I think of my ingratitude, so deeply seated, so habitual, so immovable – or rather so awfully increasing!

You load me day by day with Your favours and feed me with Yourself, as You did Judas, yet not only do I not profit thereby but I do not even make any acknowledgement at the time.

Lord, how long?   When shall I be free of this real, this fatal captivity?   He who made Judas his prey has got foothold of me in my old age and I cannot get loose.   It is the same day after day.   When will You give me a still greater grace than You have given, the grace to profit by the graces that You give?   When will You give me Your effectual grace, which alone can give life and vigour to this effete, miserable, dying soul of mine?

My God, I know not in what sense I can pain You in Your glorified state but I know that every fresh sin, every fresh ingratitude I now commit, was among the blows and stripes that once fell on You in Your Passion.   Oh, let me have as little share in those past sufferings as possible.   Day by day goes and I find I have been more and more, by the new sins of each day, the cause of them.   I know that at best I have a real share of them all but still it is shocking to find myself having a greater and greater share.   Let others wound You – let not me.   Let me not have to think that You would have had this or that pang of soul or body the less, except for me.

O my God, I am so fast in prison that I cannot get out.   O Mary, pray for me.”o my god how can i look you in the face - behold the man - bl john henry newman - good friday part two - 30 march 2018

 

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Devotion of The Seven Last Words of Christ – The Fifth Word – 30 March – Good Friday morning 2018

Devotion of The Seven Last Words of Christ – The Fifth Word – 30 March – Good Friday morning 2018

The Seven Last Words of Christ

The Seven Last Words of Christ refer, not to individual words but to the final seven phrases that Our Lord uttered as He hung on the Cross.   These phrases were not recorded in a single Gospel but are taken from the combined accounts of the four Gospels.   Greatly revered, these last words of Jesus have been the subject of many books, sermons and musical settings.

“Love is not loved”:  this reality, according to some accounts, is what upset Saint Francis of Assisi.   For love of the suffering Lord, he was not ashamed to cry out and grieve loudly (cf. Fonti Francescane, no. 1413).   This same reality must be in our hearts as we contemplate Christ Crucified, He who thirsts for love.   Mother Teresa of Calcutta desired that in the chapel of every community of her sisters the words “I thirst” would be written next to the crucifix.   Her response was to quench Jesus’ thirst for love on the Cross through service to the poorest of the poor.   The Lord’s thirst is indeed quenched by our compassionate love;  He is consoled when, in His name, we bend down to another’s suffering.   On the day of judgement they will be called “blessed” who gave drink to those who were thirsty, who offered true gestures of love to those in need:  “As you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me”  (Mt 25:40).”

Pope Francisthe lord's thirst is indeed quenched - pope francis - good friday no 2 - 30 march 2018

The Fifth Word

“I thirst” (John 19:28)

Gospel:  After this, Jesus knew that everything had now been completed and, so that the scripture should be completely fulfilled, he said:  I thirst.   A jar full of sour wine stood there; so, putting a sponge soaked in the wine on a hyssop stick, they held it up to his mouth….John 19:28-29

During Our Lord’s Passion, He was twice offered a drink.   This first was a mixture of wine and myrrh.   This Our Lord refused because it was commonly given to condemned criminals to deaden pain.   His Passion and Death would have been rendered worthless if He had allowed anything to mitigate the pain He was about to suffer.   The second drink He was offered was sour wine or vinegar.   This He drank.   In doing so, He drank deeply of the cup which He had begged His Father to remove from Him in the Garden.   He drank the last dregs of the cup of our punishment.

Lord God, Your Only Begotten Son drank deeply of the cup of iniquity for my sake.   If I were to try to drink the same draft by myself, I would not be able to survive.   It is only with Your help that I can hope to drink of my own bitter draught and survive.   Help me to turn away from the sweetness of the world and accept the bitter drink that is punishment for my sins.   I beg You to send me the grace and strength required to accept this bitter cup.   Let not my will be done, but Thine.  Amen.

Prayer of Abandonment to God’s Providence

My Lord and my God:
into your hands I abandon the past and the present and the future,
what is small and what is great,
what amounts to a little and what amounts to a lot,
things temporal and things eternal.
Amen. Our Father. Hail Mary. Glory Be.THE FIFTH WORD -JOHN 19 28 - THE SEVEN LAST WORDS OF CHRIST - THE DEVOTION - 30 MARCH 2018

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Quote/s of the Day – 30 March 2018 – Good Friday of the Passion of the Lord

Quote/s of the Day – 30 March 2018 – Good Friday of the Passion of the Lord

“But far be it from me to glory,
except in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ,
by which the world has been crucified to me
and I to the world.”

St Paulbut far be it from me - st paul - good friday 30 march 2018

“We give glory to You, Lord,
who raised up Your Cross to span the jaws of death
like a bridge by which souls might pass
from the region of the dead to the land of the living. ..
You are incontestably alive.
Your murderers sowed Your living body in the earth
as farmers sow grain but it sprang up
and yielded an abundant harvest of men
raised from the dead.”

St Ephrem the Syrian (306-373) Father & Doctor of the Churchwe give glory to you lord - st ephrem - 30 march 2018 - good friday

“Mount Calvary is the academy of love.”

St Francis de Sales (1567-1622) Doctor of the Churchmount calvary is the academy of love - st francis de sales - 30 march 2018 - good friday

” …Let us direct today our gaze toward Christ,
a gaze frequently distracted by scattered
and passing earthly interests.
Let us pause to contemplate His Cross.
The cross, fount of life and school of justice and peace,
is the universal patrimony of pardon and mercy.
It is permanent proof of a self-emptying and infinite love
that brought God to become man,
vulnerable like us, unto dying crucified.”

Pope Benedict XVI – 21 March 2008pope benedict - let us direct our gaze - good friday - 30 march 2018

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One Minute Reflection – 30 March 2018 – Good Friday of the Passion of the Lord

One Minute Reflection – 30 March 2018 – Good Friday of the Passion of the Lord

When Jesus had spoken these words, he went forth with his disciples across the Kidron valley, where there was a garden, which he and his disciples entered.   Now Judas, who betrayed him, also knew the place;  for Jesus often met there with his disciples..…..John 18:1-2jesus was in a garden, not of delight - blaise pascal - 30 march - good friday 2018

REFLECTION – “Jesus was in a garden, not of delight as the first Adam, in which he destroyed himself and the whole human race but in one of agony, in which He saved Himself and the whole human race.”…Blaise Pascal  (1623-1662)
“Do not pass one day without devoting a half hour, or at least a quarter of an hour, to meditation on the sorrowful Passion of your Saviour.   Have a continual remembrance of the agonies of your crucified Love and know that the greatest saints, who now, in heaven, triumph in holy love, arrived at perfection in this way.” – St Paul of the Cross  (1694-1775)st paul of the cross - do not pass one day - good friday - 30 march

PRAYER – Be mindful Lord, of this Your family, for whose sake our Lord Jesus Christ, when betrayed, did not hesitate to yield Himself into His enemies hands and undergo the agony of the Cross.   Help us holy Father, to ever keep the Cross in our hearts and minds and to accept our own with love of You.   Through Jesus our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, one God, amen.jesus praying in the garden

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Our Morning Offering – 39 March 2018 – Good Friday of the Passion of the Lord

Our Morning Offering – 39 March 2018 – Good Friday of the Passion of the Lord

The Angel of the Agony
Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890)

Jesu! by that shuddering dread which fell on Thee;
Jesu! by that cold dismay which sicken’d Thee;
Jesu! by that pang of heart which thrill’d in Thee;
Jesu! by that mount of sins which crippled Thee;
Jesu! by that sense of guilt which stifled Thee;
Jesu! by that innocence that girded Thee;
Jesu! by that sanctity that reign’d in Thee;
Jesu! by that Godhead which was one with Thee;
Jesu! spare those souls which are so dear to Thee;
Who in prison, calm and patient, wait for Thee;
Hasten, Lord, their hour and bid them come to Thee;
To that glorious Home, where they shall ever gaze on Thee.
Amenthe angel of the agony - bl john henry newman good friday 30 march

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 30 March

Bl Amadeus of Savoy
St Clinius of Pontecorvo
St Cronan Mochua
St Damiano
St Domnino of Thessalonica
St Fergus of Downpatrick
St Irene of Rome
Bl Joachim of Fiore
St John Climacus
St Julio Álvarez Mendoza
St Leonard Murialdo
St Ludovico of Casoria
St Mamertinus of Auxerre
St Marie-Nicolas-Antoine Daveluy
Bl Maria Restituta Kafka
St Osburga of Coventry
St Pastor of Orléans
St Patto of Werden
St Peter Regulatus
St Quirinus the Jailer
St Regulus of Scotland
St Regulus of Senlis
St Secundus of Asti
St Tola
St Zozimus of Syracuse

Martyrs of Constantinople:  ourth-century Christians who were exiled, branded on the forehead, imprisoned, tortured, impoverished and murdered during the multi-year persecutions of the Arian Emperor Constantius.   They were martyred
between 351 and 359 in Constantinople.

Martyrs of Korea:
Marie-Nicolas-Antoine Daveluy
Iosephus Chang Chu-gi
Lucas Hwang Sok-tu
Martin-Luc Huin
Pierre Aumaître