The reflections for Sundays and Solemnities is an activity of Society of St Paul, India
A Reflection by:
Fr. Y. Edal Kumar, msfs
St. Joseph Church, Kurla (W)
Dear Friends in Christ Jesus,
For the past 40 days we have been reflecting upon various aspects of our Christian life along with the Passion of our Lord. And, today we are called to reflect more deeply and intimately on the historical event of our Lord’s Passion and Death.
Every Good Friday reminds us of the suffering that Jesus experienced before He could offer His life on the Cross. It was an excruciating suffering that Jesus experienced and the brutal pain that was inflicted upon Him was a heart crushing moment. But, He spoke nothing in self-defense; there was just one thing in His mind that is to ‘Accomplish His Father’s Will’.
His Father’s will was to set His people free from slavery of sin and death and to grant them eternal life. Jesus the life giver made it possible by offering Himself on the cross. The cross though in appearance is mere a wood, has turned out to be the symbol of redemption and the seat of liberation.
The meaning of the Cross as has been said in the 2nd Reading of the day in the letter to the Hebrews, “Let us therefore, approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need”. So, Cross has been rightly presented as the ‘Throne of Mercy’. Jesus was enthroned on this Mercy Seat so that all might receive mercy through Him. The Father’s will was that not even one may be lost but all may be drawn towards Him through His loving mercy and this task was accomplished in the person of Jesus enthroned on the cross.
Secondly, Jesus enthroned on the cross with the writing over it ‘Jesus King of the Jews’ tells us of the true king who took upon Himself the blows and bruises so that the world that is sick with sin is healed. He accomplished His Father’s will that ‘I have come not to be served but to serve and to become ransom for many’, because Jesus has come not on His own but sent by His Father. The ransom that He paid, as the King enthroned on the cross, to accomplish His Father’s will was His own life.
Thirdly, Jesus enthroned on the cross and uttering His last word with the sigh ‘It is accomplished’, is the expression of contentment and fulfillment in the mission that He had undertaken and now has accomplished. The accomplishment of the mission was to re-establish the broken relationship with the Father and He has done it by hanging on the cross between heaven and earth.
Friends, we call this day Good Friday, not merely because on this day our savior was crucified but on this day the Goodness of God was personified in and through the person of Jesus enthroned on the cross. Jesus’ contentment that ‘His Father’s will is accomplished’ is with the belief that we His disciples would radiate the Goodness of God to all. The mission that has been entrusted to us by Jesus when He said, ‘I Thirst’ on the cross; He thirsts for the souls to come back to His Father; we need to work as water that flows through all the hurdles to make the place fertile in our own responsibilities and with our own limitations. The responsibility may vary from person to person depending on the vocation; nevertheless, the central call to holiness and to drink the water that flows from the stream of everlasting throne of grace which is the cross is same for all.
Thus, all our penance and sacrifices that we have made and the meditations that we have been through on the Passion of our Lord during these days of Lent would find meaning if only we continue to accomplish the Father’s will of setting people free from slavery of sin and death and re-establishing the fact that our God is God of goodness and mercy, slow to anger and does not take pleasure in punishment and abounding in love.
May God of Mercy Bless each of you!