Daily Archives: 10 April 2020

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After the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Salome bought spices to anoint the body of Jesus. On the way they said to one another: ‘Who will roll a way the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?’ [it was a very large stone].

Then they looked up and saw that the stone had already been rolled back. So, they entered and saw a young man and they were alarmed.

‘Don’t b e alarmed,’ he said. ‘I know you are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He is not here he has been raised!’

Mark 16: 1-4; 5b-6a Good News Translation

Reflection: Resurrection

Jesus, you had told your disciples that you would die and on the third day rise again!

Each of the four Gospels contains a different version of how the stone was moved.

Mark’s story describes a very large stone, so heavy the women’s central thought was how to remove it. In both Luke and John’s accounts the stone has gone or been rolled aside. Matthew tells of an earthquake with an angel moving the stone out of the way and proceeding to sit on it.

Lord, may we be known as your disciples through our
reactions to the good news of your resurrection.
Roll away any stones and doubts that close our hearts
and reveal the truth of your saving love.
May we truly declare, and take out to the world, the
Gospel message that you are our Lord and Saviour, our
ever present help in time of trouble, now and for eternity.

Alleluia, Christ is risen!
He is risen indeed, Alleluia!

14. Jesus is laid in the tomb

Joseph [of Arimathea] bought a linen sheet, took Jesus’ body down, wrapped it in the sheet, and placed it in the tomb which had been dug out of solid rock. Then he rolled a large stone across the entrance of the tomb. Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joseph were watching and saw where the body of Jesus was laid.

Mark 15:46-47 Good News Translation

Reflection: Jesus is laid in the tomb

The darkness falls: the world is hushed.
The Cross stands bare and empty.
The stone cold tomb receives its guest.

As the Sabbath begins: Jesus is laid to rest.

The large stone makes the seal complete.

Hearts are grieving and in pain. And yet and yet;
God ordains what happens next
Lord, be with all who suffer and those who mourn.

Enter hearts sealed by sadness and grief.

Dry their tears: bless them with comfort and peace.

In the darkness there is no darkness
with you O Lord; the deepest night is clear as the day.

[words of a Taizé chant]

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

13. Jesus is taken down from the Cross

When it was evening, a rich man from Arimathea arrived; his name was Joseph, and he also was a disciple of Jesus. He went into the presence of Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus.

Pilate told him he could have the body, so Joseph went and took it away. Nicodemus, who at first had gone to see Jesus at night, went with Joseph. The two men took Jesus’ body and wrapped it in linen with the spices according to the Jewish custom of preparing a body for burial.

Matthew 27: 57-58a / John 19 : 38b-40 Good News Translation

Reflection: Jesus is taken down from the Cross

Blessed Jesus, you inspire acts of love.
Joseph and Nicodemus grew in faith.
Showed compassion and care.

Did your mother hold you one last time?
Were these two men an answer to her prayer?
How deep is our love for you? How sure our faith?
Can we be the answer to another person’s prayer?

Lord, we seek a deeper relationship with you.
We wish to grow in faith and trust.
Inspire our witness, fill us with compassion.
May we always be sensitive to the needs of the living,
the sick, the dying and those who mourn.

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

12. Jesus dies on the Cross

Standing close to Jesus’ cross were his mother Mary, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. Jesus saw his mother and the disciple he loved standing there.

It was about twelve o’clock when the sun stopped shining and darkness covered the whole country until three o’clock; and the curtain that was hanging in the Temple was torn in two. Jesus cried out in a loud voice: ‘Father! Into your hands I place my spirit!’ He said this and died.

John 19:25 / Luke 23: 44-46 Good News Translation

Reflection: Jesus dies on the Cross

Love and sacrifice. Darkness and dying. With his mother and close friends standing by Jesus gives up his spirit to redeem the world.

Thinking of his suffering renders us speechless. Jesus falling silent places himself in God’s hands.

Accept his gift of eternal love and everlasting life. He is with you always, even to the end of time. Do not speak, in silence let him into your heart.

Lord, we offer you all that we are, all that we have,
and all that we do.
We place into your hands all our hopes and fears,
praying may Your will be done.

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

11. Jesus is nailed to the Cross

Two other men, both of them criminals, were also led out to be out to death with Jesus. When they came to the place called ‘The Skull’ they crucified Jesus there, and the two criminals, one on his right and the other on his left.

Jesus said:
‘Forgive them Father! They do not know what they are doing.’

Luke 23: 32-34a Good News Translation

Reflection: Jesus is nailed to the Cross

Dear Lord, the horror of your agony is unimaginable.
You taught love yet you experienced such hate.
Even as you felt the nail s driven into your tired flesh
you still spoke words of forgiveness.

Lord, we may not know, we cannot tell, what pains you
had to bear, but we believe it was for us
you hung and suffered there.
Help us to understand the immensity of your gift to us,
We pray:
In your mercy, forgive us our sins.

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

10. Jesus is stripped of his garments

They took Jesus’ clothes and divided them into four parts, one part for each soldier.

They also took the robe, which was made of one piece of woven cloth without any seams in it.

The soldiers said to one another:
‘Let’s not tear it; let’s throw dice to see who will get it.’

John 19: 23-24a Good News Translation

Reflection: Jesus is stripped of his garments

The soldiers had no respect, empathy or compassion. Jesus you know what it is like when others make us feel exposed and unfairly scrutinised.

When they treat our wellbeing as a game
Be with us in our vulnerability, when we are rejected;
It is not our outward appearance that matters to you
but rather the person you created us to be.

Lord, may we show care for those who are stripped of all
their dignity through no fault of their own.
May we ever strive to realise our full potential thanking
you for seeing us as we are and loving us always.

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

9. Jesus falls for the third time

Sometimes they strew his way,
and his sweet praises sing, resounding all the day
Hosannas to their King.
Then ‘Crucify!’ is all their breath,
and for his death they thirst and cry.

Why, what hath my Lord done?
What makes this rage and spite?
He made the lame to run, he gave the blind their sight.
Sweet injuries! Yet they are these
themselves displease, and ‘gainst him rise.

‘My Song is Love Unknown’  S Crossman (1624-83)

Reflection: Jesus falls for the third time

Was it tiredness, muscle cramps, dehydration or dizziness that caused him to stumble?
Exhaustion bringing him to despair?

We too have times when we feel we cannot go on. When the heavy daily load brings us to our knees. We may face circumstances in our journey through life when the future seems so bleak, we feel we are falling and are tempted to lose hope.

Through the words of the hymn ‘Father, hear the prayer we offer’ let us truly pray:

Lord , be with us in the hours of weakness,
in our wanderings be our guide,
through endeavour, failure, danger,
Father, be thou always at our side.

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

8. Jesus speaks to the women

A large crowd followed him; among them were some women who were weeping and wailing for him.

Jesus turned to them and said:
‘Women of Jerusalem! Do not cry for me, but for yourselves and your children.’

Luke 23: 27 28 Good News Translation

Reflection: Jesus speaks to the women

Who were these women who were so distressed?

Maybe they had heard his teaching, seen him perform healing miracles and had hoped for greater things. They may have shed tears of self pity that Jesus had not become the kind of messiah they had expected.

Lord, forgive when we weep for unfulfilled desires and
fail to give thanks for the good times.
May we pray for others as much as for ourselves,
knowing there is a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance.

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

7. Jesus falls for a second time

Jesus said to his disciples:
‘I must go to Jerusalem and suffer much… I will be put to death but three days later I will be raised to life.’

He also said:
‘If anyone wants to come with me, he must forget about self, carry his cross, and follow me. For whoever wants to save his own life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.’

Matthew 16: 24 25 Good News Translation

Reflection: Jesus falls a second time

Jesus had entered the city to cheers and hosannas only a few days ago, now he heard the watching crowd jeer and shout out obscenities as he fell again onto the dirt of the road under the weight of the cross.

Were the disciples who had followed him to Jerusalem remembering the words he had spoken?

How incredibly humiliating it must have been for Jesus to fall to the ground in front of mocking faces, and yet he remained humble accepting the fate of death on a cross.

Lord, when despair and danger take us to inner places
of darkness, help us to always remember that because
you have experienced human weakness your love will
lift us and you w ill save us when we fall.

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

6. Veronica wipes Jesus’ face

If we ask:
‘When Lord, did we ever see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you a drink? When did we ever see you a stranger and welcome you in our homes, or naked and clothe you? When did we ever see you sick or in prison, and visit you?’

Jesus will reply:
‘I tell you, whenever you refused to help one of these least important ones, you refused to help me.’

Mathew 25: 37; 45. Good News Translation

Reflection: Veronica wipes Jesus’ face

Legend tells us that Veronica was willing to risk danger, and her own safety, by coming out from the crowd to wipe the sweat from Jesus’ face through a small but significant act of kindness.

Although the story is not told in the Gospels, it brings a reminder of the importance of seeking ways to relieve the suffering of others, of seeing Jesus himself in the faces of those who are despised, abused and on the margins of society.

Lord, you call us to ease the burdens of others where
the smallest of gestures can mean so much.
By your grace, may we too step out with compassion,
striving to see your reflection in all who are feeling
rejected and weighed down by indifference and pain.

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

5. Jesus is helped by Simon

During his earthly ministry Jesus told his followers: ‘If anyone wants to come with me, he must forget self, take up his cross every day, and follow me.’

Luke 9:23 Good News Translation

On the way to the place of crucifixion ‘they met a man named Simon, who was coming into the city from the country, and the soldiers forced him to carry Jesus’ Cross.’

Luke 15: 21 Good News Translation

Reflection: Jesus is helped by Simon

Simon of Cyrene did not offer willingly to help carry the Cross of Jesus. The task was forced upon him.

Jesus never forces anyone to follow him.

He calls us to be his disciples, asks us to bear the burdens of others as if it is him who we are serving.

Lord, by sharing its weight, Simon served you on the
day you were most in need of loving kindness.
May we seek ways to carry your Cross for you,
for you are in our midst in the homeless and the poor;
in the sick and starving and the refugees crying for help.
You told your disciples the way would not be easy.
Lead us to bear the burden of others
as if we were serving you

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

4. Jesus meets his mother

When Mary and Joseph took the infant Jesus to the Temple, Simeon, led by the Holy Spirit, took the child in his arms and gave thanks to God!

‘Now, Lord, you have kept your promise, and you may let your servant go in peace.
With my own eyes I have seen y our salvation.’
And to Mary, Jesus’ mother, he said:
‘Sorrow like a sharp sword will break your heart.’

Luke 2: 28 30; 35. Good News Translation

Reflection: Jesus meets his mother

Jesus, you met your beloved mother, Mary. Mary’s willing ‘yes’ to God led to your being born into a world of strife and sin, to bring healing and peace.

The glorious love song of the angels on the night you were born often goes unheard, war and terrorism reign in too many countries, hate in too many hearts.

Lord, you call us to follow the example of Mary.
By your grace grant us the strength to step out from the
crowd, to seek your face among all who suffer
from effects of war and hatred.
Help us to offer a mother’s love.
When we say yes to God show us how we can help
build an everlasting peace, world without end.

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

3. Jesus falls for the first time

The soldiers ‘beat Jesus over the head with a stick, spat on him, fell on their knees, and bowed down to him. When they had finished mocking him, they took off the purple robe and put his own clothes back on him. Then they led him out to crucify him.’

Mark 15: 19-20 Good News Translation

‘He bears the weight of all our woe, a stumbling figure bowed and scarred I see my Saviour go.’

Words from ‘A purple robe; a crown of thorns’
A traditional Passiontide Hymn

Reflection: Jesus falls for the first time

Jesus, your love for all was inclusive and generous. Yet you became an object of bullying and derision.

Beaten, humiliated, you stumbled and fell.

The crowds watched and did not intervene.

Even today those who are bullied, victims of inhumane behaviour, fall under the weight of suffering.

Lord, we are sorry for the times we have failed to speak
out against bullying, oppression and cruelty.
Through your compassionate love save all who are
brought to their knees by cruel words and actions.
Help them find the courage to be who you have created
them to be, free of the weight of the misdeeds of others.

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

2. Jesus carries his Cross

Pilate took Jesus and had him whipped. The soldiers made a crown out of thorny branches and put it on his head. Then they put a purple robe on him.

When the chief priests and the temple guards saw him, they shouted, ‘Crucify him! Crucify him!’

Pilate said: ‘You take him, and crucify him. I find no reason to condemn him.’ Pilate handed Jesus over to them to be crucified.

So, they took charge of Jesus and he went out, carrying his cross.

John 19: 1 2, 6, 16 Good News Translation

Reflection: Jesus carried his Cross

Whipped, scourged and beaten, Jesus you still had to find the strength to carry the cross laid upon you.

When we are beaten down by daily grind, the actions of others, illness and despair, where can we find the strength we need to carry on along life’s road?

Do we look to you for help, trusting through faith that you are already helping us to bear our heavy load?

Lord, help us to carry the crosses that weigh us down each and every day. To set our eyes on you, knowing that you are with us to help ease the burdens we bear.

May we ever seek your presence to guide our feet, your loving arms to uphold us and your very self to lead us and let us always see your footprints before us when the road of life is full of difficulties.

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world

1. Jesus is condemned to death

Pilate asked the crowds: “What shall I do with Jesus called the Messiah?”

“Crucify him!” they all answered.

But Pilate asked: “What crime has he committed?”

Then they started shouting at the top of their voices: ‘Crucify him!’ When Pilate saw that it was no use to go on, but that a riot might break out, he took some water, washed his hands in front of the crowd, and said: ‘I am not responsible for the death of this man!’

Matthew 27: 22 24 Good News Translation

Reflection: Pilate washed his hands of any blame.

Innocent Jesus you stood silent in the face of false accusation and were falsely condemned. Faced with decisions that affect the lives of others do we sometimes wash our hands of responsibility? Or do we speak out for those falsely accused and let our faith be shown?

Lord, may we be known as your disciples through our reactions and actions, not just when in church or with other Christians, but in our homes, workplaces , among our friends and when with strangers.

May we ever seek to speak out for people who through no fault of their own are condemned to lives of oppression and feel the world has washed its hands of them and abandoned them to an unjust fate.

We adore you O Christ and we bless you
Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world