Our site uses cookies to improve the user experience and we recommend accepting its use to take full advantage of the navigation

A team of 200 priests comment on daily Gospel

View other days:

Liturgical day: Sunday 5th (B) of Lent

Gospel text (Jn 12,20-33): There were some Greeks who had come up to Jerusalem to worship during the feast. They approached Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, and asked him, «Sir, we wish to see Jesus». Philip went to Andrew and the two of them told Jesus. Then Jesus said, «The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Truly, I say to you, unless the grain of wheat falls to the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much fruit. Those who love their life destroy it, and those who despise their life in this world keep it for everlasting life. Whoever wants to serve me, let him follow me and wherever I am, there shall my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him.

»Now my soul is in distress. Shall I say: ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But, I have come to this hour to face all this. Father, glorify your Name!». Then a voice came from heaven, «I have glorified it and I will glorify it again». People standing there heard something and said it was thunder; but others said, «An angel was speaking to him». Then Jesus declared, «This voice did not come for my sake but for yours; now sentence is being passed on this world; now the prince of this world is to be cast down. And when I am lifted up from the earth, I shall draw all to myself». With these words Jesus referred to the kind of death He was to die.

«Unless the grain of wheat falls to the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much fruit»

Fr. Ferran JARABO i Carbonell
(Agullana, Girona, Spain)

Today, in the last part of Lent, the Church proposes this Gospel to help us attain Palm Sunday ready to live up to these mysteries so outstanding for our Christian life. The Via crucis, or the Way of the Cross, becomes for us Christians a “via lucis”, or the Way of Light, for dying is to be born again or, even better, we must die to this world so that we can live the Truth.

In the first part of this Gospel, Jesus tells the Apostles: «Unless the grain of wheat falls to the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much fruit» (Jn 12:24). In this respect, St. Augustine comments: «Jesus said He was “grain”, that was to be mortified, to multiply afterwards; He was to be mortified by the infidelity of the Jews and He was to multiply for the faith of all the people». The bread of the Eucharist, made out of grains of wheat, is multiplied and divided to nourish all Christians. Dying in martyrdom always bear fruit; this is why «Those who love their life», paradoxically, «destroy it». Christ died to bear, with his blood, fruit; we have to imitate Him to resurrect with Him and bear fruit with Him. Many are those who offer their lives silently for the welfare of their brothers. Through silence and self effacement we have to learn to become that grain that dies to get back to Life.

The Gospel of this Sunday ends with an exhortation to walk in the light of the Son lifted up from the earth: «And when I am lifted up from the earth, I shall draw all to myself» (Jn 12:32). Let God's light shine always through us to help us dissipating all darkness. It is God's moment now, let us not lose it! «Are you sleeping?; the time granted to you goes by fast!» (St. Ambrose of Milan). We must not stop being a light to the world. As the moon gets its light from the sun, we are to be seen reflecting God's light.