3rd of March

Publié le 2 Mars 2022

Gospel text

(Lk 9:22-25): 

 

Jesus said to his disciples: “The Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised.”

Then he said to all, “If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. What profit is there for one to gain the whole world yet lose or forfeit himself?”

 

The Application

 

The Lord does not ask us to carry the cross of others, but our own. Man by his own nature would like to avoid the cross and choose the resurrection. God, who is free, grants us this freedom of choice. Choosing His laws and His will may temporarily make us suffer. However, we must believe that God, who is full of goodness and generosity, would never wish us suffering.  Therefore, let us discern in wisdom and we will have the blessing of the Lord.

 

Action of the day: Learn to carry your cross joyfully.
 

“If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me”

 

+ Fr. Josep Mª MASSANA i Mola OFM

(Barcelona, Spain)

 

Today is the first Thursday of Lent. The ashes our Church laid yesterday on our forehead are still fresh; and are meant to remind us of a forty days journey. In the Gospel, Jesus, shows us two routes: the way of the cross he must undergo, and our own way to follow him.

His path is the Way of the Cross and that of death, but also that of His Glory: “The Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised.” (Lk 9:22). The route we must take is, essentially, the same one Jesus took, and He shows us how to follow it: “If anyone wishes to come after me…” (Lk 9:23).

Hugging his Cross, Jesus complied with the Will of His Father; as for us, carrying ours on our shoulders, we follow him in his Way of the Cross.

The path of Jesus is summarized in three words: suffering, dying, raising from the dead. Three aspects constitute our own footpath too (two attitudes and the essence of our Christian vocation): Self-Denial, taking up our cross every day of our life and following Jesus.

If we do not deny ourselves and do not take up our cross, we are only seeking to affirm and be ourselves; we want «to save our life», as Jesus says. Yet, by wanting to save it, we will lose it. On the other hand, those who, because of Jesus, will not strive to avoid their suffering and the cross, will save their lives. It is the resulting paradox of our following Jesus: “What profit is there for one to gain the whole world yet lose or forfeit himself?”(Lk 9:25).

Our Lord's words, closing today's Gospel, tremendously shook Saint Ignatius and sparked off his conversion: “What would happen if I would do just as saint Francis and saint Dominic did?” If only, in this Lent, the same words would help us to reach our conversion, too...!

 

Rédigé par JOHNBOSCO

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