One Minute Reflection – 14 April – Palm Sunday, Year C, Gospel: Luke 22:14-23:56
“Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do……And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”… Luke 23:34,43
REFLECTION – “Words of Salvation – Whereas Matthew and Mark, report only Jesus’ cry of abandonment, Luke’s account of Jesus’ words from the Cross, carry a different tone. It is as if we hear, translated into spoken words, what the Word of God essentially accomplishes and intends by His suffering.
First He requests of His Father, “Forgive them, for they know not what they do” – the Jews are blinded, they fail to recognise their Messiah. The Gentiles do professionally what they had done a thousand times over, crucify a supposed criminal in accord with military orders.
In fact, no-one knows who Jesus is. His request aims at excusing those who are culpable and it finds a reason to excuse!
His words to the thief, are part of the ‘Grace of Forgiveness’ earned on the Cross.
His dying words, “into your hands Father, I commend my spirit,” replace the cry of abandonment found in the other gospels. Even if the Son no longer senses the Father, even if the Father’s hands have become imperceptible, He has no other place to place Himself. In Jesus’ words, Luke allows something of the Grace so painfully won for us, to radiate from the Cross.”…Cardinal Hans Urs von Bathasar (1905-1988)
PRAYER – Almighty, everliving God, You gave our Saviour the command to become man and undergo the Cross, as an example of humility for all men to follow and showed the Grace of Your love for us. We have the lessons of His suffering, grant us also the fellowship of His Resurrection. With Mary, His Mother and ours, who stood in pain and sorrow at the foot of the Cross, we ask her for prayers for our pardon and mercy. Through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.