Monday of Holy Week Reflection

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I, the LORD, have called you for the victory of justice.

[Isaiah 42:6]

Scripture scholars tell us that Jesus identified himself with the message of second-Isaiah, those sections of the Book of Isaiah from Chapters 40-55 that deal with the crisis of the Babylonian exile (See Gerhard Lohfink, Jesus of Nazareth, Liturgical Press, 2012). Jesus recognizes himself in the suffering servant and sees his mission as one of restoring justice and returning those in exile back to the heavenly city, back into their covenant relationship with God.

If this is Jesus mission, then it is the mission for those who call themselves followers of Jesus. Even more so for those who follow the Xaverian Way, for in the Fundamental Principles of the Brothers we hear echoes of second-Isaiah:

It is through your life of gospel witness
lived in common with your brothers and sisters
that God desires to manifest care and compassionate love
to those who are separated and estranged,
not only from their neighbors,
but also from their own uniqueness;
to those who suffer want, neglect, and injustice:
the poor, the weak, and the oppressed
of this world.

As we enter into this Holy Week, where the words of the Book of the Prophet Isaiah will be repeated, may we hear in them our call “for the victory of justice,” and may we respond as Jesus did.

 

Recommended Exercise

Take time today to slowly and reflectively read today’s first reading from Isaiah, Chapter 42. As you spend time with the reading, let yourself hear God speaking, “I have grasped you by the hand; I formed you.” Who are the blind of your world who need to have their eyes opened? Who are the prisoners who need to be freed from confinement? Then reread the section from the Fundamental Principles, and ask God to show you those to whom He calls you to manifest care and compassionate love today.

 

Prayer

God of Light and of Life, you have given us The Way by sending Creation your only Son. May we who follow His passion and death experience His resurrection and allow it to gift us with the energy, compassion, and wisdom to follow Jesus Christ’s Mission. We ask this in the name of Jesus, Your Son and our brother. Amen.

 

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