Sunday, March 18, 2018

“Self-interest is but the survival of the animal in us. Humanity only begins for man with self-surrender.”

“The egocentric is always frustrated, simply because the condition of self-perfection is self-surrender. There must be a willingness to die to the lower part of self, before there can be a birth to the nobler.” ― Fulton J. SheenSeven Words of Jesus and Mary: Lessons from Cana and Calvary

Gospel Text: (JN 12:20-33)
Some Greeks who had come to worship at the Passover Feast
came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee,
and asked him, "Sir, we would like to see Jesus."
Philip went and told Andrew;
then Andrew and Philip went and told Jesus.
Jesus answered them,
"The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.
Amen, amen, I say to you,
unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies,
it remains just a grain of wheat;
but if it dies, it produces much fruit.
Whoever loves his life loses it,
and whoever hates his life in this world
will preserve it for eternal life.
Whoever serves me must follow me,
and where I am, there also will my servant be.
The Father will honor whoever serves me.

"I am troubled now. Yet what should I say?
'Father, save me from this hour'?
But it was for this purpose that I came to this hour.
Father, glorify your name."
Then a voice came from heaven,
"I have glorified it and will glorify it again."
The crowd there heard it and said it was thunder;
but others said, "An angel has spoken to him."
Jesus answered and said,
"This voice did not come for my sake but for yours.
Now is the time of judgment on this world;
now the ruler of this world will be driven out.
And when I am lifted up from the earth,
I will draw everyone to myself."
He said this indicating the kind of death he would die.

The glory of the Cross is the glory of the grain of wheat falling to the ground and dying. Its glory lies not in spectacle, in the way that our day measures glory. Its glory lies in loss of self for the sake of an abundance for others, as Jesus explains of His hour: “when I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to myself.” A covenant is never between God and an individual, nor for an individual. A covenant is between God and a people, and is for the people. God offers the new and everlasting covenant established by Jesus’ self-sacrifice to all peoples of the earth, that all of them might form one people as the Mystical Body of Christ. In Christ, each member of His Body has God’s Law written in his heart, in order to mediate that love to others through his own vocation within that Body.

The glory of Jesus’ Cross lies in loss of self not for oneself, nor even only for God, but also for all those whom God loves, which is all peoples.

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