Fifth Sunday of Lent

Scripture Readings: Ezekiel 37:12-14; Romans 8:8-11; John 11:11-45


I would guess the concept, the belief of our faith that – Jesus is Truly God and Truly Man, that Jesus is Truly Divine and Human – might bring about some questions… I would suggest that our Gospel today may help us see both sides of Jesus – The Divine and The Human.

In today’s Gospel we see the human side of Jesus as “Jesus Weeps” over the death of his friend, Lazarus. And we also see the divine side of Jesus as Jesus “Raises” Lazarus from the dead.

What message might we glean from these two examples?

First, just as Jesus loved Lazarus, so Jesus loves us!

And to quote the word’s of Jesus to Martha today, “Do you believe this?”

Hopefully we can respond as Martha did, “Yes, Lord, I do believe.”

Yet, at times we may struggle with this concept, especially, when we remember the times we have failed to meet the mark and have sinned, even grievously. Yet, our God still loves us. Hard to believe, but God loves us! Our God waits for us to come home, to turn back to the good, to turn back to God, and not only believe in God’s love, but grow in God’s love, each and every day.

The second message today is: Just as Jesus raised Lazarus, one day we will rise to live forever in glory with the Lord.

Again to quote Jesus to Martha, “Do you believe this?”

We have all experience the death of a loved one, and today’s Gospel reminds us that the love of God, the power of God, is greater than anything, including death.

The love of God is so simple that it may be difficult to explain, to appreciate. But day after day, the love of God is showered upon us as person, family and parish community.

“Do you believe this?”

And as we know, our words of belief are reflected in our lives of lived faith daily:

  • As we reach out in words and actions of love and forgiveness of others.
  • As we reach out to others by being present to others, especially in times of need.
  • As we raise up another person with words of encouragement, comfort and support.

And I am sure each of us can add an example or two of how we can reach out to another or others in love and raise up others in daily life.

One scripture writer notes that the word “Lazarus” means “God helps”…
And don’t we all need – “God’s help?”
And don’t we all need to remind other of “God’s help?”

This weekend, as we hear God’s word of life and love and share in the sacrament of life and love, the Eucharist… May we not only know of God’s unconditional love and eternal presence in our lives but may we continue to grow deeper in God’s unconditional love and eternal presence in our lives.