Tuesday, March 31st. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St John 13:21-33.36-38.
Tuesday of Holy Week
31 March 2015
«Amen, amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me.»
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 13:21-33.36-38.
Reclining at table with his disciples, Jesus was deeply troubled and testified, «Amen, amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me.» The disciples looked at one another, at a loss as to whom he meant.
One of his disciples, the one whom Jesus loved, was reclining at Jesus’ side. So Simon Peter nodded to him to find out whom he meant. He leaned back against Jesus’ chest and said to him, “Master, who is it?”
Jesus answered, “It is the one to whom I hand the morsel after I have dipped it.” So he dipped the morsel and (took it and) handed it to Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot.
After he took the morsel, Satan entered him. So Jesus said to him, “What you are going to do, do quickly.”
(Now) none of those reclining at table realized why he said this to him. Some thought that since Judas kept the money bag, Jesus had told him, “Buy what we need for the feast,” or to give something to the poor.
So he took the morsel and left at once. And it was night.
When Judas had left them, Jesus said, “Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him.
(If God is glorified in him,) God will also glorify him in himself, and he will glorify him at once.
My children, I will be with you only a little while longer. You will look for me, and as I told the Jews, ‘Where I go you cannot come,’ so now I say it to you.
Simon Peter said to him, “Master, where are you going?” Jesus answered (him), “Where I am going, you cannot follow me now, though you will follow later.”
Peter said to him, “Master, why can’t I follow you now? I will lay down my life for you.”
Jesus answered, “Will you lay down your life for me? Amen, amen, I say to you, the cock will not crow before you deny me three times.”
Tuesday of Holy Week
31 March 2015
Commentary of the day
Saint Ambrose (c.340-397),
Bishop of Milan and Doctor of the Church
Treatise on Saint Luke 10,49-52, 87-89
Amen, amen, I say to you, the cock will not crow before you deny me three times
Brothers, let us repent: let us watch out that we may not have arguments concerning precedence amongst us for our ruin. The fact that the apostles (Lk 22,24) had an argument among them is not a good excuse for us to do the same. It is an invitation to watch out. Peter repented, of course, the day he answered the first call of the Master, but can we say that his conversion happened all at once?…
The Lord gives us the example. We had need for everything; he instead, did not need the help of anybody, nevertheless he reveals himself as master of humility by serving his disciples… As for Peter, surely ready in his spirit but still weak in the flesh (Mt 26,41), he is warned that he will deny the Lord. The Lord’s Passion can find imitators but has no equals. Therefore I do not blame Peter for having denied Christ; I congratulate him for having wept. One thing is relevant to our common condition, the other is a sign of virtue, of inner strength…But if we excuse him, he did not excuse himself. He preferred accusing himself for his own sin and justifying himself by confessing his sin, rather than worsening his case by denying it. And he wept…
He wept; he did not apologize, he just cried. The one who cannot defend himself may yet wash himself; it is up to the tears to wash away the faults we are ashamed to confess in person. Tears speak the sin without trembling. Tears do not ask for forgiveness but they obtain it:…good tears, washing sin away! These weep as long as Jesus looks at them. Peter denied him a first time and did not weep because the Lord had not looked at him. He denied him a second time and he did not weep because again the Lord had not looked at him. He denied him a third time; Jesus looked at him and he wept bitterly. Look at us, Lord Jesus, so that we, too, may bewail our sin.
Tuesday of Holy Week
31 March 2015
Saint of the day
and Martyr (c. 424)
(+ c. 424)
Isdegerdes, Son of Sapor III., put a stop to the cruel persecutions against the Christians in Persia, which had been begun by Sapor II., and the Church had enjoyed twelve years’ peace in that kingdom, when in 420 it was disturbed by the indiscreet zeal of Abdas, a Christian bishop, who burned down the Pyræum, or Temple of Fire, the great divinity of the Persians. King Isdegerdes thereupon demolished all the Christian churches in Persia, put to death Abdas, and raised a general persecution against the Church, which continued forty years with great fury.
Isdegerdes died the year following, in 421. But his son and successor, Varanes, carried on the persecution with greater inhumanity. The very recital of the cruelties he exercised on the Christian strikes us with horror.
Among the glorious champions of Christ was St. Benjamin, a deacon. The tyrant caused him to be beaten and imprisoned. He had lain a year in the dungeon, when an ambassador from the emperor obtained his release on condition that he should never speak to any of the courtiers about religion. The ambassador passed his word in his behalf that he would not; but Benjamin, who was a minister of the Gospel, declared that he should miss no opportunity of announcing Christ.
The king, being informed that he still preached the Faith in his kingdom, ordered him to be apprehended. He suffered tortures frequently repeated with violence. Lastly, he expired about the year 424.
Lives of the Saints, by Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. ed. 
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