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Reflection for March 2023 (Liturgical Year – Cycle A, Year I)

Community Word: Trusting and obeying God lead us to a life of holiness
Order: “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to Him.” (Mt 17:5b)
The month of March is the season of Lent, starting with the 1st Sunday of Lent last week. The readings emphasize the way to salvation which would be realized upon the death of our Savior, Jesus Christ, at the cross. Jesus brings mercy, light and promise of eternal life to those who believe in Him, who worship God in Spirit and truth. Thus, Salvation comes to those who trust and worship God, as trusting and obeying God leads us to a life of holiness.
During Lent, let us reflect on the beautiful scriptural readings which may inspire us to walk the path of our faith in holiness.
For the 2nd Sunday of Lent, our theme is – We live a life of holiness when we listen to no one else, but Jesus. Lent raises our spirit as we spend more time praying and meditating on the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus. The story of the Transfiguration of Jesus in this gospel reminds us of our call for transformation to become better Christians as we are inspired to listen to the voice of the Lord through His word. The Lord assures us that He will bless us and our nation if we listen to His beloved Son Jesus. The gateway to faith is simply to listen to Jesus because the word of the Lord and all his works are trustworthy. There is so much to fear in this world, but Jesus simply assures us to “rise and do not be afraid.” This is His promise – “I will bless you…so that you will be a blessing,” (Gen 12:2).
Our theme for the 3rd Sunday of Lent is – We live a life of holiness when we worship the Father in spirit and truth. Jesus, Savior of the world, gives us the Living Water so that we will never thirst again. We receive the Living Water when we soak ourselves in prayer, go to mass regularly and receive the Sacraments of Reconciliation and Holy Eucharist as often as we can. He nourishes our spirit enabling us to worship the Father in spirit and in truth and directs us to the promise of eternal life. From the beginning of our baptism, the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. Through Christ, God proves his love for us that while we were still sinners Christ died for us. For this week, we receive this promise from Jesus – “…the water I shall give will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” (Jn 4:14b)
Our theme for the 4th Sunday of Lent is – We live a life of holiness when we follow Jesus who is the Light of the world. Through the miracle of the blind man healed by Jesus from his blindness, Jesus manifested that He can open our eyes to the Light of salvation if we so desire. We become a new creation so that we will never stumble into darkness again. We turn to Jesus, our Lord, in faith and in prayer to help us see the world through God’s eyes, to see as Jesus sees and walk as children of Light. He said, “I am the light of the world, whoever follows me will have the light of life.” When we follow Jesus who is our shepherd, we will never want anything because he will always refresh our souls. St. Paul assures us this promise – “Awake and arise from the dead and Christ will give you light,” (Ep 5:24b).
Finally, on the 5th Sunday of Lent, our theme is – We live a life of holiness when we believe in the resurrection on the last day. In the gospel, Jesus felt so sad when Martha told Him that His dear friend, Lazarus, passed away. Out of his love for them, He decided to bring Lazarus back to life and at the same time manifest His divinity. The message of the gospel reveals to us that there is life after death. As believers in Christ, there is no doubt that we will all rise on the day of judgement. God wants us to have eternal life in His kingdom. The sense that we should bring into the Holy Week is to love God and to be one with Him and His world. It is our responsibility to look around us and do our share in bringing people who are dead in sinfulness to God, so that they can be blessed with a gracious life. To the people of Israel, the Lord promised – I will open your graves and have you rise from them. And Jesus also said: “I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live,” (Jn 11:25). This is His promise: “I will put my spirit in you that you may live… I have promised, and I will do it…” (Ez 37:14).
Lord God, by your very words, I believe in Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior. I believe that I will resurrect on the last day and enjoy eternal life. Knowing that I am redeemed by the blood of Christ, I am sorry for all of my iniquities and beg for your mercy and forgiveness. Give me the discernment to listen to the voice of Jesus as he guides and strengthens my life. Lord, my soul waits for you for you are my help and my shield. May your kindness put my hope in you. Amen.
Sunday Readings:
March 5, 2023 – Gen 12:1-4A/ Ps 33:4-5, 18-19, 20, 22/ 2 Tim 1:8B-10/ Mt 17:1-9
March 12, 2023 – Ex 17:3-7/ Ps 95:1-2, 6-7, 8-9/ Rom 5:1-2, 5-8/ Jn 4:5-42
March 19, 2023 – 1 Sm 16:1B, 6-7, 10-13A/ Ps 23:1-3A, 3B-4, 5, 6/ Eph 5:8-14/ Jn 9:1-41
March 26, 2023 – Ez 37:12-14/ Ps 130:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7-8/ Rom 8:8-11/ Jn 11:1-45


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