Holy Mass

Holy Mass, March 20th, 2021

Fifth Sunday of Lent

Book of Jeremiah 11,18-20.

I knew their plot because the LORD informed me; at that time you, O LORD, showed me their doings.
Yet I, like a trusting lamb led to slaughter, had not realized that they were hatching plots against me: “Let us destroy the tree in its vigor; let us cut him off from the land of the living, so that his name will be spoken no more.”
But, you, O Lord of hosts, O just Judge, searcher of mind and heart, Let me witness the vengeance you take on them, for to you I have entrusted my cause!

Psalms 7,2-3.9bc-10.11-12.

O LORD, my God, in you I take refuge;
save me from all my pursuers and rescue me,
Lest I become like the lion’s prey,
to be torn to pieces, with no one to rescue me.

Do me justice, O LORD, because I am just,
and because of the innocence that is mine.
Let the malice of the wicked come to an end,
but sustain the just,
O searcher of heart and soul, O just God.

A shield before me is God,
who saves the upright of heart;
A just judge is God,
a God who punishes day by day.

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 7,40-53.

Some in the crowd who heard these words of Jesus said, “This is truly the Prophet.”
Others said, “This is the Messiah.” But others said, “The Messiah will not come from Galilee, will he?
Does not scripture say that the Messiah will be of David’s family and come from Bethlehem, the village where David lived?”
So a division occurred in the crowd because of him.
Some of them even wanted to arrest him, but no one laid hands on him.
So the guards went to the chief priests and Pharisees, who asked them, “Why did you not bring him?”
The guards answered, “Never before has anyone spoken like this one.”
So the Pharisees answered them, “Have you also been deceived?
Have any of the authorities or the Pharisees believed in him?
But this crowd, which does not know the law, is accursed.”
Nicodemus, one of their members who had come to him earlier, said to them,
Does our law condemn a person before it first hears him and finds out what he is doing?
They answered and said to him, “You are not from Galilee also, are you? Look and see that no prophet arises from Galilee.”
Then each went to his own house,

Blessed Titus Brandsma

a Dutch carmelite, martyr (1881-1942)

Invitation to heroism in faith and love

“Have you also been deceived?”

We live in a world where love itself is condemned: people call it weakness, something to grow out of. Some are saying: “Love is of no importance, we should rather develop our strength; let each one become as strong as he can and let the weak perish!” Again, they say that the christian religion with its preaching about love is a thing of the past (…) This is how it is: they come to you with such teaching and even find people who take it up willingly. Love is unknown; “Love is not loved,” as saint Francis of Assisi said in his own day; and, centuries later in Florence, saint Mary-Magdalene de Pazzi rang the monastery bells of her Carmel to make everyone know how beautiful Love is! I, too, would like to ring the bells to tell the world how beautiful it is to love! The neo-paganism [of the Nazis] may well cast off love but, in spite of everything, history teaches us that we shall be victors over this neo-paganism through love. We shall not forsake love. Love will win back for us the hearts of these unbelievers. Nature is stronger than philosophy. Even if a philosophy condemns and rejects love and calls it weakness, the living witness of love will always renew its power to conquer and entrance the hearts of men.