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Great Lent Today

Day 41 - Saturday before Hosanna (Lazarus' Saturday)

Lazarus Saturday

Opening Prayer:

O God, who have made all those reborn in Christ
a chosen race and a royal priesthood,
grant us, we pray, the grace to will and to do what you command,
that the people called to eternal life
may be one in the faith of their hearts
and the homage of their deeds.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

The Readings: (alternate)
Ezekiel 37:21-28; Jeremiah 31; John 11:45-56

In His Steps - A Lenten Series

Today: Bethany: A Dead Man (Lazarus) Rises

Daily Meditation:

Now we rejoice in your great love.
Our journey has brought us here.
It is as though we, too, are gathering in Jerusalem
to celebrate our Passover week.
We are ready to enter into the Passion drama,
and to celebrate the Paschal Mystery,
with mind and heart renewed.

We are ready to rejoice that the death of Jesus is "for me"
and that it is the ultimate victory over sin and death -
my sin and my death.

Christ was sacrificed so that he could gather together
the scattered children of God.
John 11:52

Today's Daily Reflection

by Kelly Tadeo Orbik
Center for Service & Justice, Creighton University

On this day in 1980 Archbishop Oscar Romero gave his last and most famous speech appealing to the Salvadoran army. He begged them to stop killing civilian Salvadoran men, women and children. The next day he was assassinated while saying Mass at the Divina Provedencia Chapel in San Salvador, a quiet chapel near his simple home. Archbishop Romero received death threats throughout his time as Archbishop in response to his homilies which were shared over the radio in El Salvador during their bloody civil war. To the Salvadoran people, Archbishop Romero was a prophet, a martyr and will someday be a saint. He was moved to his core by the death of his friend, Rutillio Grande, SJ. The same kind of grief I imagine Jesus felt that moved him to raise Lazarus from the dead in John 11, just before today's gospel reading begins.

Jesus' prophetic life and signs also brought threats and, in the end, execution by those who feared his power and message. After raising Lazarus from the dead, the leaders of the day were so shaken, it became clear that he would be put to death. The threats on Jesus' own life were such that he 'no longer walked about in public among the Jews, but he left for the region near the desert.' Jesus withdrew from the public but not from his call. He steadfastly continued on his mission, even knowing that it would end in sacrificing his own life.

Speaking out against injustices, coming to the aid of our friends and family when they need us, acting for social change are all difficult and sometimes have high costs. When praying with today's scripture, knowing that this weekend we celebrate Palm Sunday, I pray in thanksgiving for the example of our prophetic leaders. They were true to themselves, their faith and their vocation from God. I pray that we may all be blessed with their courage. As this Lenten season transitions to Holy Week, I pray that I will continue to make room for God's word to live and work in my life. I pray that we all may be called to live into the covenant of peace with our global community and with our God.

Prayer Reflection on the Words of Oscar Romero

By: Education for Justice
https://educationforjustice.org/

Lord God, let us believe and work towards the fulfillment of Archbishop Oscar Romero's words:
God works out the history of salvation in each people's history.
Each people is different from every other,
and no imperial power may interfere to influence our people's way of being.
The God of great empires is the God who demands
justice of the powerful in them and defends the poor of their people.
He has plenty to do there.

And the God of our impoverished peoples is also constructing the history of salvation,
with El Salvador's history and not with artificial histories.
History made alive by the Holy Spirit provides, in the resurrection, a wonderful incentive for the Christian people.
The Spirit who raised up Christ has provided in the risen Christ a model for history.
Towards the resurrection all histories must march.
God's reign is already present on our earth in mystery.
When the Lord comes, it will be brought to perfection.
That is the hope of Christians.

We know that every effort to better society,
especially when injustice and sin are so ingrained,
is an effort that God blesses,
...that God wants,
...that God demands of us.
Oscar Romero, Feb. 24, 1980 and March 24, 1980

Preface for Meditation:
by Prince Mathew

On this Saturday we remember how our Lord Jesus Christ raised His friend Lazarus from the dead. He knew Lazarus was grievously ill, but He waited till he died before He answered Martha and Mary's call for Him. Jesus knew that His own death on the Cross was near. He knew how terrified and bewildered His disciples would be, how they might doubt that He was indeed the Christ. Only after four days did He bring Lazarus back to life, so that His disciples would see that He had power over life and death and was indeed "the Resurrection and the Life." It was this miracle that prepared the way for Christ's triumphant entry into Jerusalem and gave us the certain assurance of the physical resurrection of all the dead.

Lazarus and his sisters Martha and Mary, the friends of Jesus, had given Him hospitality and served Him many times (Luke 10:38-42; John 12:23). They were from Bethany, a village of Judea. This village is situated in the eastern parts, by the foothills of the Mount of Olives, about two Roman miles from Jerusalem. When Lazarus whose name is a Hellenized form of "Eleazar," which means "God has helped" became ill some days before the saving Passion, his sisters had this report taken to Jesus, Who was then in Galilee. Nonetheless, He tarried for yet two more days until Lazarus died; then He said to His disciples, "Let us go into Judea that I might awake My friend who sleepeth." By this, of course, He meant the deep sleep of death. On arriving at Bethany, He consoled the sisters of Lazarus, who had been buried four days already. Jesus groaned in spirit and was troubled at the death of His beloved friend. He asked, "Where have ye laid him?" and He wept over him. When He drew nigh to the tomb, He commanded that they remove the stone, and He lifted up His eyes, and giving thanks to God the Father, He cried out with a loud voice, "Lazarus, come forth." And he that had been dead for four days came forth immediately, bound hand and foot with the grave clothes, and Jesus said to those standing there, "Loose him, and let him go."

This is the supernatural wonder wrought by the Savior that we remember on this day.

Bible Reading Passages:
Saturday before Hosanna (Lazarus' Saturday)

Fifty-Day Gospel Planner
(Read all Gospels during the Great Lent)

John 12

Evening

Morning

Before Holy Qurbana

Holy Qurbana

Sermons, Bible Commentaries and Bible Analyses for the Lazarus Saturday

Gospel Readings:

Luke 10:38-42 (KJV)

Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house.

And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus' feet, and heard his word.

But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.

And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things:

But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.


John 11:1-46 (KJV)

Now a certain man was sick, named Lazarus, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha.

(It was that Mary which anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick.)

Therefore his sisters sent unto him, saying, Lord, behold, he whom thou lovest is sick.

When Jesus heard that, he said, This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby.

Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus.

When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was.

Then after that saith he to his disciples, Let us go into Judaea again.

His disciples say unto him, Master, the Jews of late sought to stone thee; and goest thou thither again?

Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world.

But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him.

These things said he: and after that he saith unto them, Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep.

Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well.

Howbeit Jesus spake of his death: but they thought that he had spoken of taking of rest in sleep.

Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead.

And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent ye may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him.

Then said Thomas, which is called Didymus, unto his fellowdisciples, Let us also go, that we may die with him.

Then when Jesus came, he found that he had lain in the grave four days already.

Now Bethany was nigh unto Jerusalem, about fifteen furlongs off:

And many of the Jews came to Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother.

Then Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him: but Mary sat still in the house.

Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died.

But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee.

Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again.

Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day.

Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:

And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?

She saith unto him, Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world.

And when she had so said, she went her way, and called Mary her sister secretly, saying, The Master is come, and calleth for thee.

As soon as she heard that, she arose quickly, and came unto him.

Now Jesus was not yet come into the town, but was in that place where Martha met him.

The Jews then which were with her in the house, and comforted her, when they saw Mary, that she rose up hastily and went out, followed her, saying, She goeth unto the grave to weep there.

Then when Mary was come where Jesus was, and saw him, she fell down at his feet, saying unto him, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died.

When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled.

And said, Where have ye laid him? They said unto him, Lord, come and see.

Jesus wept.

Then said the Jews, Behold how he loved him!

And some of them said, Could not this man, which opened the eyes of the blind, have caused that even this man should not have died?

Jesus therefore again groaning in himself cometh to the grave. It was a cave, and a stone lay upon it.

Jesus said, Take ye away the stone. Martha, the sister of him that was dead, saith unto him, Lord, by this time he stinketh: for he hath been dead four days.

Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God?

Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead was laid. And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me.

And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me.

And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth.

And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with grave-clothes: and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus saith unto them, Loose him, and let him go.

Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things which Jesus did, believed on him.

But some of them went their ways to the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done.

Bible Verse of the Day:

"But only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her." - St. Luke 10:42

Intercessions:

To make us his new creation, Christ the Lord gave us the waters of rebirth
and spread the table of his body and his word.
Let us call upon him and say:
Lord, renew us in your grace.

Jesus, meek and humble of heart, clothe us with compassion, kindness and humility,
- make us want to be patient with everyone.
Teach us to be true neighbors to all in trouble and distress,
- and so imitate you, the Good Samaritan.
May the Blessed Virgin, your Mother, pray for all those vowed to a life of virginity,
- that they may deepen their dedication to you and to the Church.
Grant us the gift of your mercy,
- forgive our sins and remit their punishment.

Closing Prayer:

Loving God,
Your eternal watchfulness keeps me safe from harm.
I am filled with a great happiness
when I feel your endless love for me.
Thank you for your care for me, one of your children.
I ask you to protect from harm
those who will soon be your children,
joined in the joy of your church.
Please continue to pour out your blessings
on all of us who have been given
the life-giving waters of baptism.

May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.

More

Sermons for Lazarus Saturday

MW Journal Issue 209 (Lazarus Saturday Special) April 9, 2014

MW Journal Issue 131 - Holy Week Special 1 (40th Fri/Lazarus Sat)

MW Journal Issue 67 - Holy Week Special 1 (40th Fri/Lazarus Sat/Palm Sunday)

Source: Portions from: Creighton University Praying Lent

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