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 March 29th, 2009 - Fifth Sunday of Lent - Jn 12/20-33

Catholic Homilies  March 29th, 2009 - Fifth Sunday of Lent - Jn 12/20-33

March 29th, 2009 A.D.

Fifth Sunday of Lent - Jn 12/20-33

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Background:

  One of the major goals of Lent is to force us to reflect on our own death and to see our way through it. We all must die, as much as we donít like the  fact.  We try to hide it, dodge it, deny it. Yet we canít in fact escape it. Jesus came into the world, not so much to do away with death (not immediately) but to teach us how to die by his example and then to assure us that death does not say the last word on. When we walk into the valley of death we do not walk alone. Jesus is with us because heís been there before and knows what it is like. Moreover he promises us that just as he rose from the dead so will we. We will all be young again. We will all laugh again.

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00spc.gif (820 bytes) Story:

  Once upon a time there was a young grandmother (well all grandmothers are young arenít they?) who totally adored her oldest grandson (like most grandmothers do). He was a good young man too. Handsome, friendly, courteous, more mature than you could  reasonably expect any teenager to be. He was also an excellent athlete and was to be valedictorian of his class. Then, just a week before graduation, another teen (quite drunk) plowed into the car in which the young man was returning from a baseball game. He died three hours later in the hospital. Everyone in the family was, devastated, as you can well imagine. The grandmother was furious. Why do such things happen, she demanded. Why did it have to happen to my grandson? What kind of God would permit this to happen to me? He must be a cruel and vicious God. Why should I believe in him?  I donít believe in him. My grandson was so young, he had the rest of his life ahead of him. Itís all right for old people not to die, but not for someone who had a right to a long and happy life.I don’t believe in heaven. I don’t believe in anything.

  She carried on like this for months, making the tragedy even harder for her family. She stopped going to Church and refused to talk to the priest who dropped by her house to talk to her. I hate God, she insisted. Then one night, maybe she was dreaming, maybe she was half away, her grandson, in his baseball uniform, came to visit it her. Cool it, Grams, he told her. I’m happy. Life is much better where I am. You’re not acting like my grams any more. We all have to die sometime, young or old, but here we’re all young and we’re all laughing. So the grandmother began to let go of her grief and rage.

 

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Psalm 51:3-4,12-15

3 For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.
4 Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done that which is evil in thy sight, so that thou art justified in thy sentence and blameless in thy judgment.
12 Restore to me the joy of thy salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit.
13 Then I will teach transgressors thy ways, and sinners will return to thee.
14 Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation, and my tongue will sing aloud of thy deliverance.
15 O Lord, open thou my lips, and my mouth shall show forth thy praise.

 We all have to die sometime, young or old, but here we’re all young and we’re all laughing. So the grandmother began to let go of her grief and rage
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