Meanwhile, standing near the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing beside her, he said to his mother, ‘Woman, here is your son.’ Then he said to the disciple, ‘Here is your mother.’ And from that hour the disciple took her into his own home.
After this, when Jesus knew that all was now finished, he said (in order to fulfill the scripture), ‘I am thirsty.’ A jar full of sour wine was standing there. So they put a sponge full of the wine on a branch of hyssop and held it to his mouth. When Jesus had received the wine, he said, ‘It is finished.’ Then he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. Reflection by Janet Derby In the Catholic church, it is customary to read the entire Passion story both on Palm/Passion Sunday and on Good Friday and to stand during the entire reading. As a child, it seemed like it lasted for hours and you certainly understood the story of Christ’s humanity and suffering. Still, always hearing the story in its entirety doesn’t necessarily allow you to think about the individual parts. What came to me as I read this passage was the tenderness of this moment. After being betrayed by his closest friends and his followers, Jesus is not vengeful or self-centered. Rather, one of the last acts of his life is to be sure that his mother is cared for. Prayer
God of Love and Compassion, On this day when we recall your suffering and death, help us to emulate your kindness and devotion to others. Amen.