Daily reflections for Holy Week from Rev. John P. McGarry, S.J. paired with beautiful images from our Digital Photography students.
Schedule of live-streamed Masses throughout the Diocese of Sacramento for Holy Week: List of Livestreaming Masses
As we journey with Jesus from Palm Sunday through Holy Week in the context the Coronavirus Pandemic:
Let us pray for the humility to recognize the chances we have to bring God’s love into the life of another person;
Let us pray for the courage to move beyond our own needs and fears to try to do for others what Jesus would do;
Let us live with the hope to remember that through our kindness and love we can help to re-shape our lives and this world more into the image, likeness and vision of the one who was born, who lived, suffered, died, and rose again to save us and set us free: Jesus, our Christ.
God takes on our humanity in its brokenness in order to heal us of that brokenness: to open our eyes to realize our need for one another; to open our ears to hear the cries for compassion, forgiveness and justice around us; to open our spirits to embrace one another in our disappointments and pain. God takes on the hopelessness of the cross in order to win for us the triumph of the empty tomb, to transform death from the final humiliation into the beginning of something much greater and much more sacred.
Our word (“I give you my word”), is one of the most important things we can give to another person.
As we walk with Jesus this Holy Week, let’s take measure of the value of our own promises and words of devotion and support to those we love, and their ability to trust in what we say and what we do.
May others hear in our word the assurance of God’s hope and peace.
Christ our Redeemer, open our eyes to see the many ways we betray you and one another.
Open our consciences to realize how afraid we often are to do what is fair, right; just and compassionate.
Help us to make the words of compassion and mercy that we offer this Easter to be a faithful bond of trust and commitment between us and those we love.
On Holy Thursday, we remember that night of the Passover of Jesus Christ. In the Eucharist, we proclaim his life, his death and the new life of his Resurrection. In our service to one another, we bring his Eucharist to our broken world and help it to heal through our acts of loving compassion and mercy. In giving of ourselves to God and to one another, the new life of Christ our Light shines forth through all the world.
The crucifixion is a sign of Jesus’ love. It points to how much Jesus loves us. It says in the most dramatic way possible what Jesus said so often in his lifetime: “No greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”
The crucifixion is an invitation to love. It invites us to imitate Jesus. “Love one another as I love you,” Jesus says.
The crucifixion is a revelation about love. It reminds us of something that we can sometimes tend to forget: that love often entails challenges, struggles, and suffering in addition to great joy. “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny him or herself and take up his or her cross and follow me,” Jesus said.
We all have crosses to bear. Thankfully, in our faith, the cross leads to life!
Easter – He Has Risen!
Happy Easter to all the members of the Jesuit High School Community, near and far!
The Lord is Risen!
- Easter means experiencing the power of Jesus changing great tragedy in our lives and in our world into a glorious new beginning, because the good news is that Jesus is risen from death and is in our midst.
- Easter holds out an invitation to each one of us. It invites us to open our hearts to the risen Jesus.
- Easter invites us to let Jesus help us trust again after we’ve had our trust betrayed by another.
- Easter invites us to let Jesus help us love again after we’ve had our love rejected by someone.
- Easter invites us to let Jesus help us hope again after we’ve had our hope flicker and die, at times.
- The risen Jesus invites us to let Him Easter within us, and let Him wipe our tears away, to let Him help us to pick up the pieces and start over again when something painful happens in our lives or when we experience loss.
My brothers and sisters, this is what Easter is all about, and this is why we should sing with joy and alleluias on this day.
Easter is the good news that Jesus has triumphed over sin and evil; and so will we, if we but open our hearts to His Easter power. It is the good news that every Good Friday in our lives can be turned into an Easter Sunday, if we but open our hearts to His Easter power. Jesus is ready to work miracles for us and in us, if we but open our hearts to Him.
Easter is the good news that we don’t have to wait until we die to share in the risen life of Jesus. His resurrection from the dead is the good news that nothing can defeat us anymore—not pain, not sorrow, not rejection or addiction, neither discouragement nor misfortune, not a pandemic, not even death.
Nothing can defeat us or hold us bound anymore because Jesus died and rose again from death to save us and set us free!
This is good news for us, my sisters and brothers. The Lord is risen. The Lord is risen, indeed.
Thank you for your support of Jesuit High School and the education and formation of our students into the risen life of Jesus Christ! Alleluia. Happy Easter!
God bless you and your families.
Rev. John P. McGarry, S.J.