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Scripture Meditation 14 Sept

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Scripture Meditation for Sunday, September 14, 2014

Feast of the Exultation of the Holy Cross

 

Readings:

Numbers 21:4b-9

[Psalm 78:1b-2, 34-38]

Philippians 2:6-11

John 3:13-17

 

 

This is the Year of Matthew as far as our Sunday Gospel goes.  However, this Sunday the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross, we have the Gospel of John.

 

This Gospel passage from the Third Chapter of John contains what is perhaps the most often quoted verse from the Gospels.  That is John 3:16:  “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.” (John 3:16)  This passage falls within that section of John’s Gospel known as the Book of Signs (John 1:19-12:50) where the seven miracles contained in this Gospel are found.

 

The third chapter of John’s Gospel begins with an exchange between Jesus and Nicodemus.  Nicodemus is described as a Pharisee and a member of the ruling class in Judea.  He visits Jesus at night. When Jesus tells him he must be born again, Nicodemus does not understand.  Unlike the typical Pharisee, Nicodemus is very open to the teaching of Jesus.  He defends Jesus against other Pharisees who sought to arrest him.  Nicodemus insisted that the law does not condemn a person without a hearing.  (John 7:50 – 51)

 

Nicodemus along with Joseph of Arimathea prepares the body of Jesus for burial (John 19:38-43).  There is a tradition which holds that Nicodemus eventually became a follower of Christ.

 

In the course of his conversation with Nicodemus, Jesus makes a direct reference to an event recorded in the 19th Chapter of the Book of Numbers.  It tells of how while on the Exodus journey the people complained about God and Moses.  God punished them by afflicting them with seraph serpents.  The serpents bit and killed many of the people.  But God relented in this punishment.  Moses was instructed to mount a bronze serpent on a pole.  Anyone bitten by a serpent who looked at the raised bronze serpent was healed.  

 

Not only does Jesus refer back to the Exodus he later refers to his future death and resurrection:  “Just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, so that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.” (John 3:14-15)  The cross is a sign of hope.  But it is hope that passes through the trial of suffering.     

 

During the Celebration of the Eucharist the priest raises the consecrated host and says: “Behold the Lamb of God, behold him who takes away the sins of the world.  Blessed are those called to the supper of the Lamb.”  One can be forgiven for making a symbolic association between this liturgical action, Christ raised on the cross and the bronze serpent raised in the desert.  

 

Once again, the cross is a sign of hope, the hope that endures the trial of suffering.  No one of us will be a stranger to suffering in this life.  The cross reminds us that regarding suffering, whatever form it may take in our lives, the Lord who brings us to it, will surely see us through it.

 

 

Most Reverend Patrick C. Pinder, S.T.D.

Archbishop of Nassau


Written by Javier Molina Monday, 08 September 2014 22:57
 

APOSTOLIC EXHORTATION EVANGELII GAUDIUM

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APOSTOLIC EXHORTATION

EVANGELII GAUDIUM

OF THE HOLY FATHER

FRANCIS

TO THE BISHOPS, CLERGY,

CONSECRATED PERSONS

AND THE LAY FAITHFUL

ON THE PROCLAMATION OF THE GOSPEL

IN TODAY’S WORLD

PDF FILE HERE

Last Updated on Friday, 29 November 2013 11:11 Written by Javier Molina Friday, 29 November 2013 10:33
 

Bishop's Welcome

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A welcome from Bishop Dbishopwrightorick M. Wright, Bishop of Belize City and Belmopan . . .


Dear Visitors,

Welcome to our diocesan home on the web. We are a vibrant community of Roman Catholic believers, numbering 170,000 throughout this great country of ours, Belize.

We commit ourselves to bringing the Good News of Jesus Christ to all we encounter. In it you will find many pages that will introduce you to the varied programs and ministries the Diocese offers as it strives to respond to the spiritual, pastoral, educational and social service needs of the people here in Belize.

Please take a moment to view this website and learn more about the
ministries and services that we have to offer. May God bless you!

Finally, we hope to see you here often!



New Changes to the Mass for the People

Last Updated on Wednesday, 13 March 2013 14:42 Written by Javier Molina Monday, 02 August 2010 14:31
   
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