Good Friday of the Passion
of the Lord
A Homily - Cycle B - 2011-2012
by Fr. Luke Dundon
First Reading Isaiah 52:13-53:12
Responsorial Psalm Psalm 31:2, 6, 12-13, 15-16
Second Reading Hebrews 4:14-16, 5:7-9
Gospel John 18:1-19:42
Lent - Good Friday (The Passion of Jesus Christ)
Gospel of St. John
John wrote to show that Christ was
the Messiah, the Divine Son of God.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came to be through him, and without him nothing came to be. What came to be through him was life, and this life was the light of the human race; and light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
A man named John was sent from God. He came for testimony, to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He was not the light, but came to testify to the light. The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.
I have always liked mystery stories. Nothing like a thrilling, who-dun-it case that takes careful thinking and sharp planning. But TODAY, no amount of sharp thinking can solve THIS mystery, the mystery of sin, suffering, and death. A parishioner even came up to me and asked a very good question. What is so GOOD, they asked, about GOOD FRIDAY? I thought, true! What is GOOD about the story we just heard? This is one of the biggest mysteries ever!!! How are we going to solve it?
Good news . . . its already been solved . . . by the one hanging on the cross. Because of HIM, EVERYTHING . . . EVERYTHING is good about this day, and we see it how? Through suffering. Our youth just offered a penance by walking four miles, making Stations of the Cross through the streets of Falls Church from St. James to St. Philip’s. This BRINGS people who are suffering to God’s love!!! People see young people witnessing to their faith, there is something intriguing about such deeds. Pontius Pilate was intrigued by the goodness of Christ, and found something almost irresistible about Jesus, and what was it? His SUFFERING.
But so it had to be . . . so He had to suffer and die . . . so He had to perform something so mysterious, yet so GOOD, because we can’t have Easter if we don’t have Good Friday. In FACT, I don’t think we realize how GOOD it is . . . let’s turn back the clock, climb up Calvary Hill, and meet a couple of people whose eyes are filled with tears . . . Mary, Jesus’ mother, and John the Apostle.
Jesus looked at Mary and John, standing below the cross, and what did He say to John? “Behold, your mother.” And what did He say to Mary? “Behold, your son.” So, John was to take care of Mary now, right? Fine, but hold on one second . . . listen to Jesus’ words again – behold, YOUR SON – He didn’t say, “Behold your NEW son,” or “Behold my replacement” – did Mary have more than one son? She had only ONE Son, her DIVINE Son Jesus. So, when our Lord said, “Behold your Son,” he was saying that, from now on, when Mary saw John, she would also see her son Jesus. And guess who John represents? All of us! So when Mary sees all of us, whom does she see? She sees her son Jesus!!!
And how is this possible? Because Jesus suffered and died on the Cross. Therefore, when WE suffer and go through difficulties, when we offer our sufferings in prayer to the Lord, guess who we look most like? We look like Him, in Mary’s eyes AND in God’s eyes. And THAT is an awfully GOOD thing. Mary sees Her Son in us when we unite our sufferings with His.
Consequently, every time we SUFFER for Him, we aren’t just His followers – we become LIKE Him. Every time we take a STAND for Him – we aren’t just his advertisers – we bring His very PRESENCE to the world. Every time we let ourselves die a little, we aren’t simply wasting away – a whole new DIVINE LIFE is growing in us, the life of Jesus!