monday 06 April 2020
Saint William of Eskilsoe
He was born in 1125 and was a French religious who willingly led a life with few comforts. He spent many hours in prayer and became a scholar of religious law. An account written after his death described him as “famous for his life and miracles.” He died in 1203.
Entrance Antiphon: Ps 34: 1-2; 139: 8
Contend, O Lord, with my contenders; fight those who fight me. Take up your buckler and shield; arise in my defence, Lord, my mighty help.
Grant, we pray, almighty God, that, though in our weakness we fail, we may be revived through the Passion of your Only Begotten Son. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
First reading: Isaiah 42:1-7
Here is my servant whom I uphold, my chosen one in whom my soul delights. I have endowed him with my spirit that he may bring true justice to the nations. He does not cry out or shout aloud, or make his voice heard in the streets. He does not break the crushed reed, nor quench the wavering flame. Faithfully he brings true justice; he will neither waver, nor be crushed until true justice is established on earth, for the islands are awaiting his law. Thus says God, the Lord, he who created the heavens and spread them out, who gave shape to the earth and what comes from it, who gave breath to its people and life to the creatures that move in it: ‘I, the Lord, have called you to serve the cause of right; I have taken you by the hand and formed you; I have appointed you as covenant of the people and light of the nations, ‘to open the eyes of the blind, to free captives from prison, and those who live in darkness from the dungeon.’
R/ The Lord is my light and my help.
- The Lord is my light and my help; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; before whom shall I shrink?
- When evil-doers draw near to devour my flesh, it is they, my enemies and foes, who stumble and fall.
- Though an army encamp against me my heart would not fear. Though war break out against me even then would I trust.
- I am sure I shall see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living. Hope in him, hold firm and take heart. Hope in the Lord!
Praise and honour to you, Lord Jesus! Hail to you, our King! You alone have had compassion on our sins. Praise and honour to you, Lord Jesus!
Gospel: John 12:1-11
Six days before the Passover, Jesus went to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom he had raised from the dead. They gave a dinner for him there; Martha waited on them and Lazarus was among those at table. Mary brought in a pound of very costly ointment, pure nard, and with it anointed the feet of Jesus, wiping them with her hair; the house was full of the scent of the ointment. Then Judas Iscariot – one of his disciples, the man who was to betray him – said, ‘Why wasn’t this ointment sold for three hundred denarii, and the money given to the poor?’ He said this, not because he cared about the poor, but because he was a thief; he was in charge of the common fund and used to help himself to the contributions. So Jesus said, ‘Leave her alone; she had to keep this scent for the day of my burial. You have the poor with you always, you will not always have me.’ Meanwhile a large number of Jews heard that he was there and came not only on account of Jesus but also to see Lazarus whom he had raised from the dead. Then the chief priests decided to kill Lazarus as well, since it was on his account that many of the Jews were leaving them and believing in Jesus.
Prayer over the Offerings
Look graciously, O Lord, upon the sacred mysteries we celebrate here, and may what you have mercifully provided to cancel the judgement we incurred bear for us fruit in eternal life. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon: Ps 101: 3
Do not hide your face from me in the day of my distress. Turn your ear towards me; on the day when I call, speedily answer me.
Prayer after Communion
Visit your people, O Lord, we pray, and with ever-watchful love look upon the hearts dedicated to you by means of these sacred mysteries, so that under your protection we may keep safe this remedy of eternal salvation, which by your mercy we have received. Through Christ our Lord.
On this Monday of Holy Week, we are reminded in the Reading of the Suffering Servant of Yahweh; one who is innocent but does not want to justify his innocence. He is provoked but he does not say a word; misrepresented and blackmailed but he does not react. He knows that the truth will out; that we can never hide the truth for ever. So, he does not seek to justify himself. The humility and peaceful approach of Jesus towards his adversaries, is a lesson to most of us who, more often than not, want to make a show of our might. Might is not always the winning force; so, Jesus teaches us that we can win over others by love and peace. Love conquers everything and no prize can be put on peace. Unfortunately, we live in a world where violence and the logic of force have taken over and the human being is reduced to a brute. We have a lot to learn from the Suffering Servant of Yahweh. In our Gospel today, Jesus raises Lazarus from the dead and this attracted a lot of interest, so, the Jews who had wanted to silence Jesus, also decided that they should kill Lazarus on account of whom many were believing in the Lord. The attitude of the Jews shows a typical human feeling that makes us jealous and angry with our rival to a point where we want to destroy him and anything or person that will remind us about this rival. However, we forget that we are not always in control of all the elements of life; that God alone controls our destiny and that we may not always succeed in our evil plans. If each of us would only be satisfied with who he is and thank God for the wonder of his being, our planet would be a heaven. But as long as many people are not satisfied with themselves, they will not be happy with others either. So, problems are bound to come although we can avoid them.