April 15, 2014

The Gospel Today 

Tuesday of Holy Week

John 13:21-33, 36-38

Reclining at table with his disciples, Jesus was deeply troubled and testified,
“Amen, amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me.”
The disciples looked at one another, at a loss as to whom he meant.
One of his disciples, the one whom Jesus loved,
was reclining at Jesus’ side.
So Simon Peter nodded to him to find out whom he meant.
He leaned back against Jesus’ chest and said to him,
“Master, who is it?”
Jesus answered,
“It is the one to whom I hand the morsel after I have dipped it.”
So he dipped the morsel and took it and handed it to Judas,
son of Simon the Iscariot.
After Judas took the morsel, Satan entered him.
So Jesus said to him, “What you are going to do, do quickly.”
Now none of those reclining at table realized why he said this to him.
Some thought that since Judas kept the money bag, Jesus had told him,
“Buy what we need for the feast,”
or to give something to the poor.
So Judas took the morsel and left at once. And it was night.

When he had left, Jesus said,
“Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him.
If God is glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself,
and he will glorify him at once.
My children, I will be with you only a little while longer.
You will look for me, and as I told the Jews,
‘Where I go you cannot come,’ so now I say it to you.”

Simon Peter said to him, “Master, where are you going?”
Jesus answered him,
“Where I am going, you cannot follow me now,
though you will follow later.”
Peter said to him,
“Master, why can I not follow you now?
I will lay down my life for you.”
Jesus answered, “Will you lay down your life for me?
Amen, amen, I say to you, the cock will not crow
before you deny me three times.”

Reflection (Sem. Philip Faustino Volante):

     At this time, the whole Church is observing Holy Week.

     I was born in a family who has a deep devotion and observance of the Holy Week, and I can say that this has been my first catechesis. The very first lesson I learned about Jesus I learned during Holy Week.

     I remember our house always filled with the chants of people reading and singing the Pasyong Mahal every Maundy Thursday. Aside from that, the whole family is busy preparing the santos in our house for the annual procession. The penitensya, senakulo, tabaran, pa-gulong and pa-caridad are vivid memories of how Holy Week would always be, and even up to this moment, the tradition has been passed on to our parents and they are now passing it on to us. But amidst all the busy-ness of our family at this time, my parents would never forget to teach us the reason behind the observance of this season, that Jesus Christ died on the cross to save us from our sins. God gave His only begotten Son to us because of His great love for us. The texts in the Pasyong Mahal, the images during the procession and the stories of my parents and grandparents about Jesus’ suffering, death and resurrection made me know Him and develop a deep love to Him and His Father.

     It may sound odd but, the commemoration of Jesus’ death has given birth to my love and personal relationship with Him. The commemoration of his death reminds me and my family to hold on to Jesus, and be strong for each other. There were times when our family were faced with challenges and struggles, but the thought of Jesus suffering, dying and rising from the dead is already enough to show us that there is always hope of resurrection. No matter how tired Holy Week may be for our family, we will never give up on these traditions, just as Jesus never gave up on showing His divine love for us.

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