Lenten Reflection – 7 April – The Fifth Sunday of Lent, Year C, Gospel: John 8:1–11
Isaiah 43:16-21; Psalms 126:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 6; Philippians 3: 8-14; John 8:1-11
And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you;
go and do not sin again.”…John 8:11
Bishop Robert Barron
“Friends, our Gospel today tells about the woman that scribes and Pharisees caught in adultery. Imagine where they were standing when they caught her in the very act. The voyeurism and perversion of these men! Then they come en masse, in the terrible enthusiasm of a mob and they present the case to Jesus.
Now, what does Jesus do in the face of this violent mob? First, He writes on the ground. The mysterious writing might indicate the listing of the sins of each person in the group. As He said in another Gospel, “Remove the plank in your own eye, and then you can see more clearly the speck in your brother’s eye.”
And then He says, “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to cast a stone at her.” He forces them to turn their accusing glance inward, where it belongs. Instead of projecting their violence outward on a scapegoat, they should honestly name and confront the dysfunction within themselves.
This story, like all the stories in the Gospels, is a foreshadowing of the great story toward which we are tending. Jesus will be put to death by a mob bent on scapegoating violence.
Reflect: What is “scapegoating violence” and where do you see it in our culture? Have you ever been involved in this type of violence yourself?”
Inspired by His love, guided by His example,
change our selfishness into self-giving.
Today we celebrate the Third Scrutiny,
as we journey to the font with those preparing for Baptism.
We are in our last week before Holy Week.
It seems that there is so much left to do,
to ask for, to be open to, to surrender, to change.
Jesus assures us that He is the “resurrection and the life,”
that if we place our faith in Him, we will “never die.”
“I am troubled now. Yet what should I say?
‘Father, save me from this hour’?
But it was for this purpose that I came to this hour.
Father, glorify your name.”
Today we beg for the graces we need and desire this week.
We ask for courage in the journey ahead.
Indeed I count everything as loss
because of the surpassing worth
of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.
it’s so hard to love the world sometimes
and to love it the way Jesus did seems impossible.
Help me to be inspired by His love and
guided by His example.
Most of all, I want to accept that I can’t do it alone,
and that trying is an arrogance of self-centredness.
I need You, dear God, to give me support in this journey.
Show me how to unlock my heart
so that I am less selfish.
Let me be less fearful of the pain and darkness
that will be transformed by You into Easter joy.
May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.