April 09, 2015
Thursday in the Octave of Easter
1st Reading: Acts 3:11–26
Gospel: Lk 24:35–48
Then the two told what had happened on the road and how Jesus made himself known when he broke bread with them.
As they went on talking about this, Jesus himself stood in their midst. (And he said to them, “Peace to you.”) In their panic and fright they thought they were seeing a ghost, but he said to them, “Why are you upset and why do such ideas cross your mind? Look at my hands and feet and see that it is I myself. Touch me and see for yourselves that a ghost has no flesh and bones as I have.” As he said this, he showed his hands and feet.)
In their joy they didn’t dare believe and were still astonished. So he said to them, “Have you anything to eat?” and they gave him a piece of broiled fish. He took it and ate it before them.
Then Jesus said to them, “Remember the words I spoke to you when I was still with you: Everything written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms had to be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures.
And he went on, “You see what was written: the Messiah had to suffer and on the third day rise from the dead. Then repentance and forgiveness in his name would be proclaimed to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. Now you shall be witnesses to this.
(Daily Gospel in the Assimilated Life Experience)
As a child I played with our bolo in defiance of my mother’s prohibition. The hard lesson of disobedience buried its claws by inflicting a deep wound at my wrist. The wound had healed long ago but the scar is still there to remind me of that act of disobedience.
From the physical, moral and psychological points of view, scars are undesirable. Physically scars look ugly; morally they mar the soul; psychologically they traumatize the person. I had tried removing this ugly scar using different ointments but none worked. I will have to bear this scar for the rest of my life.
The Passion inflicted so many ugly scars on the body of Jesus. He could have sanitized his glorified body from these ugly marks of sufferings through the transforming power of the resurrection. Surprisingly, Jesus retained these scars when he rose from the dead. He even used them as proof of his identity.
Suffering is too important that Jesus elevated its marks to the level of the sacraments, becoming signs and symbols of victory over death. St. Paul explained the importance of sufferings when he wrote: “We also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope” (Romans 5:3-4).
But we do not love suffering for its own sake. The sufferings that are meritorious to a Christian are those that help us follow God’s will. I have more reasons now to dislike this scar on my wrist because this is fruit of disobedience, not of love for others as Jesus’ wounds are. – Rev. Fr. Dan Domingo P. delos Angeles, Jr., DM. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: http://www.frdan.org.
Prayer for the day: God our Father, perfect us in what we suffer and so come to share in the fruits of the resurrection. Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
SAINT OF THE DAY: Today is the Feast of St. Mary of Cleophas, mother of the Apostle St. James the Less and Joseph (Matt. 27:56; Mk. 15:40). She is the wife of Cleophas and the sister of the Blessed Virgin Mary (John 19:25). She stood by the Mother of Jesus on Mount Calvary (Matt. 27:56; Mk. 15:40; John 19:25) and she was with Mary Magdalene when they discovered the empty tomb on Easter Sunday (Mk. 16:1; Luke 24:10). St. Mary of Cleophas followed Jesus and believed in His Words.