16 Mar 2013

17th March 2013 - 5th Sunday of Lent (Solemnity of St. Patrick)

On this week's programme, a dear friend of the programme, Fr. Micheal Liston, joins John and Ann Keily to celebrate the solemnity of St. Patrick (Patron Saint of Ireland). 

Fr. Micheal introduces St. Patrick as someone who suffered a lot in his youth, but in the middle of all his suffering, he became conscious of God's presence and love.  Fr. Micheal encouraged us to set aside the external celebrations of St. Patrick's day to look at the model of St. Patrick as someone who had discovered the mysterious presence of God in his life.  We are invited to reflect on the reality that God is here with us as He was for Patrick.  God is fond of us. God has time for us. 

St. Patrick is also a great model of how we should respond to God's grace in our lives.  Patrick recognised his own limitations and the abundance of God's grace working in his life.  Fr. Micheal invited us to confess, as Patrick did, that with all our limitations, it is God who has done this good work in our lives.  Patrick gives glory to God, because the glory is God's.  God has a sheer ghrá (affection/love) for us and we are called through prayer and humility to imitate Patrick by responding to God's grace and love with a spirit of self-giving and gratitude.  This is the true spirit of Patrick.

This weeks programme's podcast is available HERE.  Fr. Micheal's reflection on St. Patrick is available HERE.

A Sunday reflection based on St. Patrick's Breastplate prayer is available HERE.

St. Patrick's Confessio is available to buy HERE or is free HERE.

Gospel - John 8:1-11

As the solemnity falls on a Sunday this year, the prayers of the Mass are taken from the Mass of St. Patrick and the readings are taken from the 5th Sunday of Lent. 

Image Source
God's presence in this Gospel is a presence of love that sets a person free.  In the Gospel, Jesus offers the woman caught in adultery a new future. What seemed to be a dead end - a blocked situation - is opened up.  That is the great Easter mystery.  The death of Jesus on Good Friday seemed to be the end - but the Father raised Jesus up - and opened a future for all of us beyond death. 
When we are in a dark place and we don't see anything, God invites us to pray: "Into your hands, O Lord, I commit my spirit".  God invites us to trust in Him - to say 'Thy will be done'.  The future is in God's hands and He can open a future anywhere, no matter how blocked that future seems to be.

Reflections on this weeks gospel:

Word on Fire
English Dominicans
Sunday Reflections
Centre for Liturgy

Liturgical odds and ends

Divine Office - Week 1

Saints of the Week

March 18th - St. Cyril of Jerusalem
March 19th - St. Joseph
March 20th - Blessed John of Parma
March 21st - St. Enda, Abbot
March 22nd - St. Lea
March 23rd - St. Toribio Alfonso de Mogrovejo

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