MARCH IS THE MONTH OF ST. JOSEPH
The Third Week of Lent
“Tired by his journey, Jesus sat down beside the well. It was about the sixth hour.” John 4, 6.
Jesus is weary, tired out by his journey. He sits down on the edge of a well. It is midday, and he sits there exhausted. All these details are meant to signify something. They capture our attention, persuading us to ask questions. That’s good: as Jesus said ‘ask and it will be given to you’
It was for our sake that Jesus was tired by his journey. In Jesus we meet divine power together with human weakness. He is strong and weak at one and the same time: strong, because ‘in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God’. As the second person of the Holy Trinity, the Son of God was present with God from the beginning. For ‘All things were made through him, and apart from him nothing came into being.’ Could any greater power exist than the power of one who created the entire universe? When we call to God with the words ‘Almighty God’, this is what we mean. Nothing is impossible for him. The word ‘strength’ hardly comes into it, so how is it that the Son of God is tired after a journey?
In a sermon on this passage of St John’s Gospel, St Augustine tells us that THE JOURNEY of Jesus undertaken for us, was his Incarnation. How could he otherwise journey when he is present everywhere, and absent from nowhere? To what place or from what place could he travel? In only one way could he come to us, and that was by assuming our visible human flesh. ‘The Word became flesh’ and so the taking of our human nature was his journey. It was the journey from Eternal Life to earthly mortality, from heavenly light to the darkness of the sin of the world, from divine glory to the Cross. On the other hand, St Augustine says, THE TIREDNESS of Jesus caused by his journey, was the tiredness Jesus experienced in our human nature. In his human body he was weak, but that does not mean we should be weak and just give in to sin and embrace the ways of this world. Just because Christian Faith and Morals are constantly assaulted by the world both in and out of the church, we little people must keep the faith by holding on to the Cross of Jesus. It is The Cross which is our strength. Jesus said ‘Blessed are those who are persecuted’. We shall be strong in the weakness of Christ and keep going for “there is more power in divine weakness than in human strength.” and St Paul said ‘when I am weak, then I am strong’.
Being strong when we are weak may sound like a contradiction, but St Paul knew what it meant to take up the Cross and was killed in the end for doing so and not conforming to the ways of Rome. It is because Jesus has been on this journey through this vale of tears for us. It is when we are weak, we no longer rely on ourselves but must turn to God for our strength. We can know that if we have taken up the Cross and follow Christ that the morality of the world, the secularisation of all that we have held sacred, the suppression of sacred custom, the celebration of false teaching loudly proclaimed and the cancelling and restricting of worship for faithful Catholics in many places, will not prevail against God’s church and never has. The strength and power of tyranny has never prevailed against the weakness of True Devotion to The Sacred Heart of Jesus among God’s faithful. O Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in you! We will proclaim from our hearts, day after day. ‘For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord’ (St Paul again, to the Romans 8, 38 -39)
With Christ on our side, who can be against us? The Son of God was tired by his journey so that we may find courage and strength to continue through the Lenten wilderness on ours and with our trust placed in his Sacred Heart, we will face down any temptation to give up the faith and despair of The Catholic Church which may lie ahead for many of her people.
STATIONS OF THE CROSS
We are doing the traditional Stations of the Cross of St Alphonsus Liguori at 7. 30 p.m.every Friday in Lent concluding on Good Friday .There will also be a Children’s Stations of the Cross on Good Friday at 10.30 a.m.
WALK WITH ME Pick up your ‘Walk with Me’. Daily Reflections through Lent. £1.00 donation asked. Some junior versions may still be available, also available is the excellent ‘Day by Day’ for juniors and infants.
FRIDAY LENTEN REFLECTIONS. Join Patricia in the presbytery after mass on Friday mornings in reading the Sunday scriptures and sharing your thoughts with one another with Tea, coffee and even a biscuit.
PARISH YOUTH NOTICES
MASSES AND INTENTIONS FOR THE THIRD WEEK OF LENT
MARCH PRAYER TO ST.JOSEPH