In the first reading, Isaiah 49:1-6, we are presented one of the oracles about the Suffering Servant. We are called to consider the extent of the Father's will, his care. It is a reminder of the universality of God's forgiving love for all humankind.
In this part of of the Book of Isaiah, the prophet speaks, as usual, for Yahweh. His mercy reaches out "to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and restore the survivors of Israel." Through the suffering and teachings of his Son, the Father was assured that "my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth."
During these final days and hours of a sacred week, we can see that these pain-filled days demonstrate the supremacy of our God. During these days what we are considering yet again should bring us to recognize the power of God. The Father's will, his plan for our redemption, is not disturbed or destroyed. Jesus fulfills what his Father's love required to lead you and me to our salvation. Even the treachery of a close associate, truly a betrayal of trust, cannot alter God's plan for redemption.
This bring a reality we should accept in faith: do we ever doubt that our sins cannot be forgiven by the Father? Do we ever fail to see our own personal relationship to this week, to these sacred hours? Indeed there may have been Judas days in our lives when we walked away from the Lord's table. Despite our failures, we know there is an Easter morning .... for all humankind. This reality should bring us to speak to God with words we may not use during the course of the year. Every minute of this week should be a reminder that Jesus suffered bitterly for each of us sinners that God's forgiveness would lift us up.
Crucifix that hangs above the altar in the church
Jesus the Divine Word Parish
Commissioned by the founding Pastor
Fr. Roger Soley
Photographer: Ms. Peggy Arnold