Have you ever betrayed God?
After high school, I moved to Manila from the province to study in one of the universities. There was a feeling of independence because, for the first time, I was going to live away from my family. However, that period of new found freedom was also a period when I turned my back on God. I stopped praying. I stopped going to Church. I became worldly. I felt like I did not need God. I betrayed His love. I stayed this way for a very long time. But after all the revelries, something was still missing, and I felt empty.
“Although man can forget God or reject Him, He never ceases to call every man to seek Him, so as to find life and happiness (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 30).” Today’s Gospel talks about two betrayals. One repented and was redeemed, the other killed himself in despair. Thanks be to our Lord Jesus Christ for His love and mercy. He has been patient with me that even when I was faithless, “He remains faithful, for he cannot deny himself” (2 Timothy 2:13). After 20 years, I asked Jesus for forgiveness through the sacrament of reconciliation. Who would have imagined I would later on enter the seminary?
By Sem. Richard Lim
THE GOSPEL TODAY
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?”
“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.”