Lectionary: 37 and 38
Read Sunday’s Gospel: Luke 22:14-23:56
This year we hear Luke’s account of Jesus’ Passion beginning with the Last Supper which for Luke, shows signs of the heavenly banquet. During the meal, Jesus predicted but did not name his betrayer. Following the meal, all the disciples went with Jesus to the Mount of Olives to pray. There Jesus was, indeed, handed over by Judas to the Jewish leaders. In retaliation, a disciple cut off a servant’s ear, but Jesus touched the ear and healed him. Jesus went before the high priest in whose courtyard Peter denied Jesus the three times predicted at supper. At daybreak, Jesus went before the Sanhedrin and on to Pilate, to Herod, and back to Pilate who tried to release Jesus to the crowds. Pilate did not find Jesus guilty of anything, but the crowd pressed for the release of Barabbas and the crucifixion of Jesus. Jesus was led to the cross, helped by Simon, mourned by the women of Jerusalem, and taunted by the Roman soldiers. When at last Jesus died, a man named Joseph gave up his tomb so that Jesus would not be buried in a common grave of criminals.
Reflection for Families
Simon is not one of the most notable figures in the story of Jesus’ Passion, but perhaps he is the one with whom we can most identify. Whether we’d rather do something else, are too tired, or just want a break from time to time, we know how Simon felt being pressed into service at a time when he would rather not. But Simon was a responsible citizen, just as we are responsible people. And, whatever our mood or preferences, we do what we must do. In the end, our hearts are glad, just as Simon knew there was something special about his action. As disciples of Jesus, we are called to follow Jesus in service—even when it is difficult.
Bringing the Gospel into Your Family
As a family find some time during Holy Week to walk through the Stations of the Cross. (If you don’t know of a parish, shrine, or other location that has a way of the cross, your diocesan office will be able to help.) Take a Bible or Stations of the Cross booklet along with you and recall the passion as you move from station to station. Allowing all members of your family to participate may require paraphrasing but let as many as possible be part of the event.
- One way I can help someone carry a cross is by . . .
- One way I deny Jesus is when . . .
- One way I live my faith, even though it may be difficult is . . .