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Wednesday, March 28, 2018

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Holy Week

Isaiah 50:4-9
Psalm 69:8-10, 21-22, 31, 33-34
Matthew 26:14-25

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his suffering saves us

"I gave My back to those who beat Me." —Isaiah 50:6

I have a son who is a young adult who suffers from back and sciatic pain. He has had to undergo two back surgeries. I hurt to see him suffer. I gladly pay for him to receive treatment and surgeries that may help relieve his suffering. I pray each day for his healing. I could not imagine willingly bringing suffering on my son. Yet Jesus offered His own back for our salvation (Is 50:6).

Reading in the Scriptures that God, Who loved His only-begotten Son Jesus far more than I love my son, would hand Jesus over to suffer agony to save sinful humanity (Jn 3:16), a human race who would reject and crucify Him, is to read about a love far beyond any love I can imagine. God's love is so far above my love — as far as the heavens are above the earth (Is 55:8-9).

Then at Mass this morning I hear the words of this Son: " 'This is My body, to be given up for you' (see Mt 26:26). 'This is the chalice of My blood, which will be poured out for you, for the forgiveness of sin' " (see Mt 26:28). Though I have been attending Mass daily for decades, I realize I still do not comprehend how much God loves humanity — how much He loves me and you.

All that remains is to receive His love and respond to it by offering Him our heart, mind, soul, strength, and life in return (Ps 116:12-13; Lk 10:27).

Prayer:  Jesus, I love You so much. I offer You my life for the salvation of many souls.

Promise:  "See, the Lord God is my Help." —Is 50:9

Praise:  Contemplating the crucifix, Mark realized how little he understood God's love for him. He regularly prays before a crucifix as a way of growing in the love of Jesus.

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, May 10, 2017

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