March 22, 2016
Simon Peter said to him, “Master, where are you going?”
Jesus answered him,
“Where I am going, you cannot follow me now,
though you will follow later.”
Peter said to him,
“Master, why can I not follow you now?
I will lay down my life for you.”
Jesus answered, “Will you lay down your life for me?
Amen, amen, I say to you, the cock will not crow
before you deny me three times.”
Today we mourn the loss of innocent life in Brussels. We see how weak and broken our humanity is yet again. Only in Christ's strength are we strong. Our best promises and our words, like Peter's, often fall short. It often feels that way when people try to become social media warriors or talking heads set about trying to explain, from their side of the aisle, what went wrong. I get that people want to make sense of tragedy and feel like they are helping. But usually their words, like Peter's, are a lot of bluster.
"Will you lay down your life for me?" Our answer might be something like, "Lord, you will need to help me to do so. I cannot do it on my own." Holy Week is our yearly reminder that we needed God to intervene. The world cannot fix itself through policy or might. Only Christ has the power to save.
This week, we can offer up penances and acts of denial for those mourning in Brussels, and for the souls of those who died. Let us not lose heart but remember that we Catholics have a loving, forgiving God who greatly desires us to be with Him forever. Let us, as Erin mentioned yesterday, contemplate the extent of His love for us as we behold Him, more intensely this week than any other, with arms outstretched on the cross, beckoning us sinners toward His mercy.
Eternal rest grant unto them, Oh Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.