Good Friday

To watch Fr. Joe’s homily from Good Friday: CLICK HERE!

This day, one of the most solemn and holiest days in our Christian tradition speaks to us about great suffering, betrayal, rejection and sadness.  While also offering incredible hope.

The Gospel today is very familiar; but a Gospel that is never easy to listen too.  Yet we are invited to enter into every moment of the Lord’s suffering and sacrifice and at the same time recalling to mind own faults, failings and sin — and above all the Lord’s love for us.

And that is where the hope comes in: suffering and sacrifice that is rooted in LOVE.

And, yes we know that, but in these troubling times the reminder of God’s great love cannot occur often enough.

About 7 years ago, I was in Myrtle Beach for the World Golf Amateur.  One morning before the tournament began, I played a practice round at one of the golf courses.  Since I was alone, I joined two other golfers.  Introductions were made and we began what one non-golfer has called a good walk spoiled.  Well that day we did little walking, carts were mandatory.

Of course between shots there was conversation about many things, including questions like: Where are you from?  Are you retired?  What do you do for a living?

Well after several holes, one of the guys asks, “Joe what do you do for a living?”  To which I answer, “I am a Roman Catholic Priest.”  Well, as you might imagine the language for the rest of the round was Rated G.

Any ways when we finished, I was putting my clubs into my car, and one of the golfers came over to talk.  He shared with me, with tears in his eyes, “Father Joe it was only recently that I really came to understand and appreciate that if I was the only person to ever live on the earth, Jesus Christ lived and died and rose for me.  I thank God for his love every day and make an effort to live his love through my life every day.”

Let us pray today for OPEN HEARTS as we walk with Jesus as he carries his cross.  Today is an opportunity for us to grasp more fully what Jesus did for us out of love and to consider how we might give his sacrifice deeper meaning in and through our own lives.

At the end of today and every day there is only one thing that matters…  Jesus made that clear through his suffering and sacrifice and by his very words, “as I have loved you, so you must love one another.”