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Monday of Holy Week

April 18, 2011

Blessed Monday!

All-powerful God, by the suffering and death of Your Son,
strengthen and protect us in our weakness.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son,
Who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(Opening Prayer for today’s Mass)

Readings:
Isaiah 42:1-7 (the Messiah comes to rescue, not destroy)
Psalm 27:1-3, 13-14 “The Lord is my light and my salvation”
+John 12:1-11 (Mary anoints Jesus’ feet)

Behold My servant, whom I uphold,
My Chosen One, in Whom My soul delights
-Isaiah 42:1

This, too, is Jesus’ identity.
He is God’s Chosen, His delight, upheld by divine omnipotence.
It is fitting that Mary should honor Him with all the extravagance at her disposal.
Indeed, Jesus Himself commended her lavish love.

I assure you, wherever the good news is proclaimed throughout the world,
what she has done will be told in her memory
-Mark 14:9

This isn’t to say that we should neglect the poor.
Jesus made it abundantly clear that what we do for them, we do for Him (Matthew 25:40)
and the fact that the disciples supposed
that Jesus had told Judas to go buy something for the poor
suggests that this was common practise (see John 13:29).

But neither should we neglect to express our love for God directly.
To fail to do so is to rob Him.
(Judas was a thief–see John 12:6)

Even as an earthly ruler has people dedicated entirely to the service of his person,
it is fitting that our God should have men and women dedicated entirely to Him.
Nothing is too good for God!

This is the great gift of contemplatives,
who pour out their lives entirely on Jesus’ feet
as a witness to a utilitarian world
that God alone is worth our all.

Like them, and like the fragrance of Mary’s ointment,
those of us who serve Him more indirectly are to be

the aroma of Christ for God’s sake,
both among those who are being saved and those on the way to destruction;
to one a fragrance from death to death,
to the other a fragrance from life to life.
-II Corinthians 2:15-16

Mary’s ointment was the fragrance of death to Judas,
the fragrance of life to believers.

We will be too as we lavish on Jesus the best of our time in prayer,
the best of our resources in ornamenting His sacred liturgy and furthering His Kingdom,
the best of our love in praise and adoration–
as we share God’s delight in His Chosen One.

This is Jesus’ identity.
This is our identity.
Let’s not hold back.

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