Scripture Reflection . . .
Fifth Sunday of Lent
First Reading: Ezekiel 37:12-14
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 130 “With the Lord there is mercy and fullness of redemption.”
Second Reading: Romans 8:8-11
Gospel: John 11:1-45
“This illness is not to end in death, but it is for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”
These words of Jesus upon hearing that his friend Lazarus was very sick connected with a recent experience
Walking by our community garden in February the bright cheery yellow of a daffodil in full bloom caught my eye. For two reasons. One, it was February which is usually to cold and early for Spring flowers. Two, it was growing out of the compost pile—a mass of decomposing plant material, kitchen scrapes and yes, animal manure.
Here in plain view was new life out of death—resurrection! The Paschal Mystery is played out again and again in nature. The breaking down of what was once living becomes the rich nutrients and warmth necessary for new life to spring forth. The glory of God visible in the beauty of the flower.
In today’s scripture Readings there is a theme – the Spirit of God dwelling in us; “I will put my spirit in you that you may live.” (see Ezekial and Romans). Our part is to believe in God’s promise and be open to this Spirit. There are times when it just feels like decay and mess and no newness of life is coming forth. We are invited to give our struggling spirit over to the mercy and care of God’s Spirit. And God’s glory will be revealed – often in ways we don’t expect.
In Our Lives as Sisters of The Holy Redeemer . . .
For us as Sisters of the Holy Redeemer, the Paschal mystery is core to the spirituality and mission entrusted to us by the Holy Spirit. We believe that resurrection is always possible when the mess and struggles of life are embraced with God’s help.We seek to offer hope and healing to each other and others by our presence; a way of saying “You’re not alone in this struggle.”
This past week we had many opportunities to be present to each other and others as we walk this journey of life together with its daily dying and risings.
Our monthly Monday evening Mass and simple supper welcomes anyone who wishes to join in community.
Tuesday evening we celebrated the birthday of one of our Redeemer Associates who is like a sister to us.
Each Wednesday is dedicated as community night in which we take turns cooking and leading prayer and an activity. This week we learned more about and prayed with people worldwide who lack access to water. We are moved to make choices and let go of certain lifestyle habits in order to conserve the precious resource of water.
Thursday evening brought us together as community again for our monthly Province Gathering to share personal updates and congregational news with each other. We listened to the movement of God’s Spirit woven throughout the sharing.
Saturday some of us participated in an event, that among many good causes helped raise awareness of the benefits of healthy foods to promote healing and disease prevention. The Sisters were invited to share about their garden ministry as a source of hope and healing.
In Your Life . . .
As Holy Week and Easter draw near, perhaps you will feel invited to take time to reflect on the experience of new life; resurrection, in your own life. When has the break down of life as you knew it given rise to a deeper richer way of living? When has chaos and mess given birth to hope and joy. Or perhaps there is something in your life that needs to be thrown onto the compost pile—to be let go—trusting that in this “loss” new life comes forth.
Blessings on your week!