Friday, March 13, 2009

Friday of the Second Week in Lent

On the Outrages That Our Lord Received in the House of Caiphas.


Consider the outrages and insults our Lord submitted to from his enemies, in the house of Caiphas. He was spit upon, he was blindfolded, he was treated as a false prophet; he was declared a blasphemer, he was judged worthy of death.

You do the same whenever you offend God. You repeat these outrages whenever you offend or scandalize your neighbor. Jesus Christ declares that he suffers whatever evil is done to the least of his disciples, as the head feels whatever injury is inflicted on the smallest member of the body. It is, then, striking Jesus Christ to strike your neighbor; it is hating Jesus Christ to hate your neighbor; it is scoffing at Jesus Christ to scoff at your neighbor.


Suffer, like Jesus, the most injurious words that may be said to you. Suffer, with Jesus, all outrages that are offered to you. Are you greater than he is? Are you more holy and innocent than he is? Jesus suffered, and you would escape suffering! Jesus did not take revenge on his enemies, and you seek revenge on yours!

Resolution: In reparation for the sins I have committed against my neighbor and thus against Jesus I will today show kindness to someone I have wronged in the past.

Prayer: Oh, Jesus my Savior, I deserve to be despised and maltreated by creatures, since I have had the insolence to despise and maltreat thee. I deservedly merit their blows, since I have so often raised my hand against thee! I hear thee declared guilty, and I wish to be thought innocent! I behold thee unjustly condemned to death, and I shrink, with pain, from the thought of dying! Oh, my sweet Savior, I wish to die for thee, since thou hast given thy life for me! I will bear with patience the injurious words and actions of those who hate me, since thou hast suffered the most base and malicious treatment for me.

Oh, dear Jesus! silence me when I complain of the malice of those who desire to harm me; restrain me when angry impulses urge me to speak. When I have offended or injured my neighbor, say to me: "Why do you strike me? Why do you dishonor me? I hold as done to myself, that which is done to the least of my members."
By a Member of the Society of Jesus, edited and amended by J. Scott Bailey, C.Ss.R.

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