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Liturgical day: Saturday 25th in Ordinary Time

1st Reading (Zech 2:5-9.14-15a): I, Zechariah, raised my eyes and looked: there was a man with a measuring line in his hand. I asked, «Where are you going?». He answered, «To measure Jerusalem, to see how great is its width and how great its length». Then the angel who spoke with me advanced, and another angel came out to meet him and said to him, «Run, tell this to that young man: People will live in Jerusalem as though in open country, because of the multitude of men and beasts in her midst. But I will be for her an encircling wall of fire, says the Lord, and I will be the glory in her midst». Sing and rejoice, o daughter Zion! See, I am coming to dwell among you, says the Lord. Many nations shall join themselves to the Lord on that day, and they shall be his people and he will dwell among you.
Responsorial Psalm: Jer 31
R/. The Lord will guard us as a shepherd guards his flock.
Hear the word of the Lord, o nations, proclaim it on distant isles, and say: He who scattered Israel, now gathers them together, he guards them as a shepherd guards his flock.

The Lord shall ransom Jacob, he shall redeem him from the hand of his conqueror. Shouting, they shall mount the heights of Zion, they shall come streaming to the Lord's blessings.

Then the virgins shall make merry and dance, and young men and old as well. I will turn their mourning into joy, I will console and gladden them after their sorrows.
Verscicle before the Gospel (2Tim 1:10): Alleluia. Our Savior Jesus Christ destroyed death and brought life to light through the Gospel. Alleluia.

Gospel text (Lk 9,43b-45): While all were amazed at everything Jesus did, He said to his disciples, «Listen and remember what I tell you now: The Son of Man will be delivered into human hands». But the disciples didn't understand this saying; something prevented them from grasping what He meant, and they were afraid to ask him about it.

«The Son of Man will be delivered into human hands»

Fr. Antoni CAROL i Hostench
(Sant Cugat del Vallès, Barcelona, Spain)

Today, that the Creator of all Life announces his own delivery into the hands of those whom He has come to save in exchange of his own life, is quite a provocation. It can be said that it was not necessary, that it was an exaggeration. But we keep on forgetting the heavy load overwhelming Christ's heart, our sin, the most radical evil, cause and effect of our placing ourselves in the place of God. Even more so, of our not letting God love us, while insisting on remaining within the limits of our own shortcomings and most immediate present life. It is so important for us to assume we are sinners as it is for us to recognize that God loves us in the person of his Son Jesus Christ. For, after all, we are like his disciples, «But they didn't understand this saying; something prevented them from grasping what He meant, and they were afraid to ask him about it» (Lk 9:45).

To put it in images: in Heaven we shall find all sins and all vices, except arrogance, as arrogants never admit their own sins and do not let God forgive them, a God that loves us so much to the point of dying for us. And, in Hell, we shall be able to find all virtues, except humility, as the humble one knows himself quite well and fully realizes that without God's grace, he cannot stop offending him nor can he reciprocate God's Goodness.

One of the keys of Christian wisdom is the acknowledgment of the greatness and immensity of God's Love, while we also acknowledge our smallness and the vileness of our sin. How slow we can be to grasp it! When the day will come we shall discover we have at our disposal God's Love, and we shall say along with St. Augustine, with tears of Love: «It took me so long to love you, O God!». And that day can be today. It can be today. It certainly can.