Today's Scriptural Meditation Readings:
March 18, A.D. 2007
Scripture from today's Liturgy of the Word:
Joshua 5:9a, 10-12
Psalm 34:2-3, 4-5, 6-7
2 Corinthians 5:17-21
Luke 15:1-3, 11-32
A brief reflection on today's Scripture passages:
Most people feel a bit sad at the beginning of Lent.
But, by the Fourth Sunday, there is a general feeling of gladness that we're back into some good habits of extra prayer, sharing with others in faith groups, and daily Mass if we're able. No wonder the Church calls this "Laetare (Rejoice) Sunday."
Lent is definitely a time for new beginnings. In the first reading, the Israelites are on the very borders of the Promised Land. No more of that heavenly manna would descend from the skies as soon as they crossed over Jordan. Now they would be nourished by the rich harvest of crops planted by those they would conquer in this land of milk and honey. Still, it took courage. As is always the case, some were fearful of new beginnings and longed to be back in Egypt. Would we be among the fearful ones, shirking the effort to become all that God calls us to be?
In today's Second Reading from 2 Corinthians, Paul reminds us that, "Whoever is in Christ is a new creation; the old things have passed away; behold new things have come."
So what "new things" are we called to? Paul tells us that God has given us a ministry—the ministry of reconciliation. As it was Christ's ministry on earth, so now is it our ministry, encouraging the discouraged, giving hope to those who are hopeless and despairing. God Himself pleads through us, for we are "ambassadors for Christ." An ambassador works, not through force or recrimination, but through diplomacy. For us, it means treating all we meet with the example of our love and concern. Great food for the journey in today's readings.
- Msgr. Paul Whitmore
(pwhitmore29 at yahoo dot com)
The Fourth Sunday of Lent
Lives of the saints:
Full Scripture text from today's Liturgy of the Word:
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