The Passion of Christ
St. Luke’s version of the crucifixion and death of Christ gives us the remarkable example of Christ’s forgiveness. Hanging on the cross, Jesus said, “Father, forgive them: they don’t know what they do (Lk23:24).” Luke’s Gospel is unique in telling us about the two criminals who were crucified with Christ. One of them echoed the taunts of those who put Jesus to death, by saying: “Are you not the Messiah? Save yourself and us. (Lk23:39)”. However, the other criminal made an act of faith; he said: “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom (Lk23:42).” As a sign of His great love and mercy in the midst of His own suffering, Christ responded: “Amen. I say to you. Today you will be with me in Paradise. (Lk23:43)”
If God seems to be hidden from us, we only have to remember the Gospel account of the Passion of Christ. This story is about our relationship with God. When we feel down and out because we know that we have been neglectful towards God and others, we only have to remember that Jesus Christ died for all of us. A God who would do this for us is never really far away. The Passion of Christ is a story of love, a love that is always present despite appearances to the contrary. It appears that Jesus was crucified for being a criminal like Barabbas; but in fact, Jesus took a position which was the complete opposite of what Barabbas stood for. Jesus offered to His fellow Jews and the world a radical way of confronting evil – using pure self-giving love to conquer evil.
Faith and Liturgy Committee meets today at 12:30 pm in the Conference Room.
Good Friday is a day of fasting and abstinence
Passiontide refers to the last two weeks of Lent. During Passiontide, statues and crosses are covered with purple cloths. This practice has its roots in 9th century Germany. At the beginning of Lent, a cloth covered the altar. During the Middle Ages, statues of saints and other images were covered at the start of Lent. Beginning in the 17th century, veiling was limited to Passiontide instead of throughout Lent.
One of the reasons for this custom is that Christ veiled His divinity during His suffering. The veiling of sacred images also helps us to focus on Christ’s great work of Redemption; it is a beautiful custom that leads us to greater contemplation as we walk with Jesus through His Passion, Death, and Resurrection. Our eyes are not drawn away to other objects and we can turn our focus to the altar and contemplate on Jesus Christ.
A Farewell Mass, in honor of Archbishop Wilton Gregory, will be held on Sunday, April 28, 2019, at 2:00 p.m. The Mass will be celebrated at Marist School, 3790 Ashford Dunwoody Rd. NE, Atlanta, GA 30319. The Mass will at the Centennial Center in the Young Gymnasium.
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