Archive for March, 2016

Easter Joy!

Dear Friends: alleluia, Christ is risen. He is risen indeed, alleluia!

When Mary Magdalene goes to the garden, she sets in motion the Easter gospel as she finds the tomb open and empty. A new day has dawned, God has broken the powers of death and hell and has given us the victory. Though fear, cruelty, power, and violence had their way with Jesus, as they continue to have their way with too many in our world as we remember Brussels, the Ivory Coast, Lahore and so many other places, death has no more the final word, Christ has burst from the tomb.

On Mary Magdalene’s account, Peter and the beloved disciples run to the tomb themselves. Peter hesitates. The beloved disciple enters the tomb, sees it empty, and believes. We are called to follow his example—to come, see, and believe God’s glory revealed in Jesus Christ and his glorious resurrection from the dead, which is the vision and promise of our own new life with God.

Mary Magdalene stays at the empty tomb, grieving and crying, and meets a man whom she thinks to be the gardener until he speaks. She hears her name, recognises her teacher, and believes: ‘Go, dearest Mary, go and tell them all the good news, death has no hold, – I, Jesus, am returning to my Father and your Father, my God and your God.’

The same command applies to us, too! Let us go, Easter people, let us go and let us tell them all the good news, death has no hold! Our Lord promises, ‘Whoever is in me, Jesus, and I in them, is a new creation.’

With love and prayers: Mo Andi. Alleluia Christ is risen, he is risen indeed, alleluia!

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Palm Sunday

Dear Friends,

 

‘O who am I that for my sake my Lord should take frail flesh and die?’

 One of the crowd, waving palm branches and cheering ‘Hosanna’ in the first throws of enthusiasm?

Or one of the soldiers, just doing the job, untouched by compassion, untouchable by others?

One of the disciples, in outward words and actions the Lord’s ‘best friend’ – yet still not really understanding Jesus, or still trying to control him?

Or one of the women of Jerusalem, weeping at the futility and cruelty of people’s actions, seemingly powerless to change anything?

The jeering thief, thinking only about self and escape, wanting a “quick fix” Jesus without the need to engage, to respond?

Or Mary, crushed and hopeless at the foot of the Cross, wondering where the hand of God is in life, in death, in everything?

For each of us in these days of Holy Week the answer will be different, and will be different from last year and from the years to come. For it is when we walk this road with Jesus, come to be with him in these hours, draw close to him in all his love and suffering, that we truly enter the mystery of his Passion. Then we will come to see ourselves more clearly, and know ourselves as God knows us – as those he loves and transforms and saves.

So let us be with Christ himself – in the garden, struggling in prayer and action to let God’s will be our will too; as he is nailed to the Cross, offering forgiveness to those who – heedless of what they do – seem to destroy all that is good; and in his last breath as, in loving faith, he surrenders himself totally into the Father’s hands … and live.

With love and prayers: Mo. Andi

 

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Passiontide begins

Dear Friends, today’s Gospel has many layers and facets. We can find ourselves in it in various roles, in our various moods, in darkness and light.

Mary took a pound of costly perfume made of pure nard, anointed Jesus’ feet and wiped them with her hair. An act of service and friendship, an act of deeply felt love. Judas Ischariot said, “Why was this perfume not sold for three hundred denarii and the money given to the poor?” Words of malice, words of envy. Jesus said, “Leave her alone. She bought it so that she might keep it for the day of my burial.” Words of boundless understanding, words of immeasurable patience and acceptance.

All three moods resonate – a bit of Mary, a bit of Judas, a bit of Jesus in all of us.

Lord, we shall pass through this world but once. Any good therefore we can do, let us do it now; any kindness we can see others show to any human being, let us rejoice over it now; any love shown to us, God, give us the grace to see, accept and delight in it now. Let us not defer or neglect it, for we shall not pass this way again. Amen.

With love and prayers: Mo. Andi

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A Message for Mothering Sunday

Dear Friends,

We know very little about Jesus’ upbringing, and the Gospels are quiet about his home life. Though as with all of us, it will have been important and formative.  In today’s Gospel we see his care for his mother when, even in the hour of his agony, Jesus makes sure that she will be cared for, ‘Here is your mother.’ And in ‘from this day the disciple took her into his own home’, John, too, becomes a real person who has a home and one that Jesus recognises.

Mary, in her terrible bereavement, in the frightening days to come, needs a safe place, a home. Such places are important to all of us even when, like Mary, we are no longer children.  Wherever that is, we give thanks for those places where we feel safe and loved, and for the people there that make these places special for us. And as we do, we also pray for those who have no homes, no safe places, no loving support, and ourselves in our response, in our shared humanity.

With love and prayers: Mo. Andi

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