Liturgy Alive Tuesday of Holy Week
Today's Gospel presents three persons to us.
The first is a man preoccupied with himself, his own interests and needs, his selfish satisfaction. He is not a free person; he is not open to Christ, for he serves money and greed. He will betray Jesus. This man is Judas.
Then, there is a second man, a good person, open to Christ, but weak. He tries to hide his frailty with impetuous, self-reliant bravery. He cracks in the hour of the test. He will deny Jesus. This person is Peter.
The third person is Jesus. He is totally unselfish, completely open to God and to everyone. He is the perfect servant, the person-for-others, that is described again today in the first reading in the words of the Second Song of God’s Servant. And because he was the perfect servant, he could save us all.
Lord, our God,
your Son, Jesus Christ,
had to undergo the humiliation
of being betrayed and denied
by those he called his friends.
But he made his suffering and death
into instruments of love and reconciliation.
Make us with him people-for-others,
who accept difficulties, even betrayals
and misunderstanding of our best intentions,
and turn them into sources of life and joy
for those around us.
Keep us faithful to you and to one another
through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son to save us and bring us life by his death and resurrection. Let us pray to Jesus for all who suffer and say: Lord, by your cross you have redeemed the world.
– For those whose ideals have faded, that they may still see and accept the novelty of life and constantly renew themselves, we pray:
– For the perpetual losers of their personal struggles against the forces of evil, that they may trust in Christ, whose grace is mightier than sin and death, we pray:
– For those who are lonely, deserted, or shut up within themselves, that they may accept the companionship of Christ, and through him, open themselves to others, we pray:
– For all of us, that we may learn from our Lord himself to bear our crosses in patience and humility, that somehow they may bring life to us and to our neighbor, we pray:
– For this community, that with Jesus, our Savior, it may be poor, and ser-ving and open to all needs, we pray:
Lord Jesus Christ, your cross remains to us a mystery, as does all pain and want. Yet, we rely on your word and example that it is a way to joy and freedom. Turn our crosses into bearers of happiness and life, now and for ever.
Prayer over the Gifts
Lord God, loving Father,
the evening before he gave up himself to death,
your Son Jesus, gave himself to his friends
in the form of bread to be eaten
and a cup of wine to be shared.
As we are gathered here for his holy meal,
let your Son give himself again to us,
that we may learn from him
to give ourselves for one another
and that our strength to do so may come
from Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Prayer after Communion
Our God and Father,
we have eaten the bread of faithfulness
at the table of Jesus, your Son.
We too have at times betrayed him,
when we broke our friendship with you
and when we denied to our neighbor
the right to be happy and free.
From now on, let him be our strength
in bringing justice and dignity,
to even the last and least of our brothers and sisters
and in building up together
your community of joy and hope,
in which lives Jesus Christ,
your Son and our Lord, for ever and ever.
One of the saddest experiences in life is to see one’s love and trust misunderstood, denied, or even betrayed. This was the lot of Jesus. He suffered from it, yet accepted it in order to undo our disloyalties and betrayals. This is why his own love and loyalty to the Father and to us went as far as it can go: death. And this is how he won for us, the courage to love without counting the cost and to be faithful to the end. May God fill us with his blessings: the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.