Dear Friends in Christ
The final two weeks of Lent - Passiontide - brings us closer to the highpoint of the liturgical year: the Sacred Triduum of the Passion, Death and Resurrection of Our Lord; Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter Day. We shall spend these days considering the infinite love of God, who permitted His Son to suffer for our sins. The whole meaning of the Christian life is summed-up in the Cross, and although our crucifixes and images are veiled in purple now, it is so that when they are unveiled on Good Friday, the whole drama of the mysteries of our salvation are made manifest. So, although we veil images and objects at certain times, this is only so that our sense of anticipation be heightened, and when the veils are taken away, we may see the Mysteries with fresh eyes.
Next week at Mass we shall hear the Passion read according to St Luke; on Good Friday it is always the account of St John that we hear. Holy Week, and especially the Triduum, can be seen as something of a mini-retreat for the Parish: we spend many hours in church, our lives go into a sort-of slow motion, as we consider all of the details of those last days and hours of Our Lord’s life. The primary consideration for us is: Jesus suffered all this for love of me. I would suggest that the Prayer before the Crucifix is a helpful devotion in these days as we ask in that ancient prayer: to fix deep in my heart lively sentiments of faith, hope, and charity; true contrition for my sins, and a firm purpose of amendment.
God bless you!
Msgr Kevin Hale