Thought for the Day – 8 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
The Heart of Judas
“The human heart is a mystery, the depths of which, it is difficult to sound.
We do not even understand ourselves.
The heart of man can soar to the loftiest heights of goodness or descend to unimaginable depths of evil.
Examples of the sublime heights to which men can rise, are provided by the lives of the Saints, who loved God so much, that they were on fire with charity and wished to abide forever in Him, “It is now no longer I that live,” said st Paul “but Christ lives in me” (1 Gal 2:20).
The heart of Judas, is a particularly deep mystery.
We read in the Gospel that Jesus called together His disciples in the upper room to celebrate His last Pasch with them.
Among them was Judas.
Jesus loved men so much, that He wished to remain with them, really and truly for all time, even after His approaching death.
“Having loved his own, who were in the world, he loved them to the end” (Jn 13:1).
When the meal was over, Jesus took bread and, lifting up His eyes to Heaven, He said: “Take and eat; this is my body.” Then He took the chalice, blessed it and turning towards the Apostles said these words: “All of you drink of this; for this is my blood of the new covenant, which is being shed for many.”
Then He added: “Do this in remembrance of me.”
In this way, Jesus instituted the Blessed Eucharist, which St Thomas Aquinas describes as Christ’s greatest miracle (Opsculum 57, Officium de festa Corporis Christi).
Furthermore, He raised His disciples, including Judas, to the sublime dignity of the Priesthood and bestowed on them, the power to do what He had just done.
One might say, that the infinite generosity of Jesus Christ, was exhausted at that moment.
He could not give anything more because, at that moment, He had given us Himself!
It was in this solemn moment, in which He received Jesus into his soul and was at the same time raised to the dignity of the Priesthood, that Judas finally decided to carry out his plan to sell his Master for thirty pieces of silver and to hand Him over to those who wished to kill Him.
How sin can degrade a human being!”
Antonio Cardinal Bacci