A homily from Father Connelly on the Fifth Sunday of Lent
Hello SJSP friends,
Just a few thoughts on this 5th Sunday of Lent, before I share a brilliant homily from Father Connelly regarding the raising of Lazarus. Perhaps you saw the actual footage, or read the text from a dark and empty St. Peter’s Square this past week. Perhaps you, like me, saw our Holy Father struggle to lift the monstrance, blessing the entire world with Jesus Christ himself. Perhaps you felt that blessing from one solitary man, interceding for us all.
Pope Francis highlighted the text of Mark chapter four. Jesus is asleep in the boat, and His disciples are terrified. Scripture was once again revealed in a new way for me when our Holy Father spoke the words of the disciple- ‘teacher do you not care that we are perishing?’
I wonder how many times in our lives we have asked our God that question? ‘God do you not care?’, ‘God do you not see?’.
The Pope tells us: “the disciples think that Jesus is not interested in them, that He does not care about them. One of the things that hurts us, and our families, the most is when we hear it said ‘do you not care about me? It is a storm that unleashes wounds and storms in our hearts, and it would have shaken Jesus too.’”
Perhaps that is where we find ourselves today; at this particularly painful moment. Maybe we really wonder if God really cares?
That is why it is so fitting that we have the gospel this week to ponder. Both Martha and Mary go to Jesus and say ‘Lord if you had been here, this wouldn't have happened.’ They didn’t know what Jesus was about to do. Their pain and sorrow would have grieved him. It did. He wept.
For many of us, I think those are places we have to go in our own life. Those burial caves where we think God isn’t showing up. Where we don’t know what he is about to do.
Because what we do know is that Jesus didn't raise Lazarus for Lazarus alone. The Lord raised him for Martha, for Mary, for His disciples and for all who were going to share the story of that triumph over death. Because Jesus was the resurrection and Jesus continues to be the resurrection.
He is not afraid and He cares about us. Maybe this week as we journey, in this season of Lent, to places we never thought we would find ourselves, that we would allow Jesus Christ to draw close to those caves. Those caves of questions, doubts and insecurities. Those caves of the things we’d once used to run away from our fears, that are no longer available to us. Perhaps then we’ll be faced gloriously with the Lord himself.
And now a reflection from the master ;)