• Wartakanlah Injil kepada segala makhluk.
    Mrk 16:15

  • 你们往普天下去, 向一切受造物宣传福音
    谷 16:15

  • Everything is possible by the power of the Holy Spirit’s Grace.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • Segala sesuatu menjadi mungkin dalam kekuatan karunia Roh Kudus.
    St. Arnold Janssen

  • 我当传教士不是为主牺牲,而是上主给我的最大恩赐
    圣福若瑟神父

  • Với sức mạnh Ân Huệ của Chúa Thánh Thần, Mọi việc đều có thể được.
    St Arnoldus Janssen

  • Preach the Gospel to the whole creation./Anh em hãy đi khắp tứ phương thiên hạ, loan báo Tin Mừng cho mọi loài thọ tạo
    Mk 16:15

  • There are many different gifts, but it is always the same Spirit.
    1 Cor 12:4

  • And the Word became flesh and lived among us.
    Jn 1:14

  • Let the word of Christ, in all its richness, find a home with you.
    Col 3:16

  • To proclaim the Good News is the first and greatest act of love of neighbour.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • 传扬天国福音是第一且最大的爱近人行动
    圣杨生•爱诺德神父

  • Có nhiều đặc sủng khác nhau, nhưng chỉ có một Thần Khí/
    1 Cor. 14:4

  • 圣言成了血肉,寄居在我们中间
    若 1:14

  • Ada rupa-rupa karunia, tetapi Roh satu
    1 Kor 12:4

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Friday, 22 March 2013 10:32

Passion Sunday

Written by Fr Elmer Ibarra SVD

Gospel Reading: Luke 23, 1- 49

Most of us have seen this scene in a movie: there’s a person who is strapped on an electric chair about to die. The police are just waiting for 3:00pm on the clock before pulling down the lever to deliver thousand of volts of electricity so that the prisoner who is condemned to die will be killed. And with just a few seconds before 3pm, the phone rings. The President just called up and ordered the police to give the prisoner a reprieve.

In the gospel for today, there are many points that we can ponder as we recall the Passion and Death of Jesus Christ. The gospels that are read today start with the recollection of Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem. And this is quite odd for Jesus. Usually he doesn’t want to attract any attention to himself. However in this event, he lets the people cheer and praise God as he enters the gates of Jerusalem. As the Pharisees complained and said to Jesus, “rebuke your disciples”, Jesus replied, “I tell you, if they keep silent, even the stones will cry out”.

Then in the second and longer gospel for today, it recalls how Jesus was arrested, tried, tortured, and was eventually crucified and died. In the gospel passages for today, for me there is one very touching event, the promise to the “kind” thief. In the midst of all the misery and suffering of the dying Jesus, there are people who continued to heckle and hurl verbal abuse to Jesus. Even the other thief who was hanging there together with Jesus abused him and said, “If you are the Christ, save yourself and us”. This thief who was crucified with Jesus is just thinking of himself. Meanwhile the other thief admitted to his crime and just punishment and just asked Jesus to remember him when he enters to his kingdom. And Jesus made the first “canonisation” in history; he promised this thief that on that day, he would be in paradise.

If you happen to realise this, this is almost like a miracle. It is a conversion by the good thief. He believed that Jesus did nothing wrong to deserve crucifixion and the humble request for him not to be forgotten by Jesus when he comes to his kingdom earned him his salvation. For this thief, he got his reprieve. Not in the sense that he got an extension on his life… for he eventually died after his legs were broken during the crucifixion, but he managed to get eternal life from Jesus himself.

There are many times in our lives when we think everything is hopeless. That our lives are seemingly heading to the rubbish bin. However, for Jesus nothing is ever too late. As long as we are living, we are always given another chance. And with the good thief, he is the first among many to benefit from the salvation of Christ. And we too are also in line to benefit from Christ’s saving act. So let us not lose heart, when we see that we’re so unworthy of Christ’s salvation because of the kind of life that we are living. Let us take inspiration from the “good thief”. His life was also heading to the rubbish bin with his crucifixion but because of this one act of faith, he managed to “steal” paradise and we also have this chance if only we turn around and go straight to Christ.

 

Last modified on Friday, 10 May 2013 09:42