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The Good News for the day, March 27, 2018

Tuesday of Holy Week (258)

While they were eating their meal together, Jesus became upset and said out loud: “The fact is—one of you is going to betray me.” His followers started looking at each other, at a loss who he was talking about.  One of them—the one Jesus loved so much—was next to Jesus. So Simon Peter signaled to him to find out who Jesus meant. He leaned back across Jesus’ chest and asked him, “Sir, (Kyrie), who is it? Jesus answered, “It is the person who I hand the morsel to after I have dipped it.” Then, he dipped a morsel, held it, and handed it to Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot. (After Judas took the morsel, Satan entered him.) In any case, Jesus said to him, “Whatever you are going to do, do as soon as possible.” None of those sharing the meal realized why Jesus said this to him. Some were thinking that, since Judas kept track of the money, Jesus was telling him, “Buy what we need for the festival meal”—or to give something to the poor. Judas took the morsel and left right then. It was night. When he had left, Jesus said, “Right now, This Human Child’s importance will appear –and so will the importance of God in him. If what God means appears in him—that meaning God will manifest in him—and God will manifest it at once—now! My fellow children I am going to be with you only a little longer. You will look for me and—as I told the Judeans so publicly, ‘Where I am going –you cannot come,’ Now I am telling it to you” Simon Peter said to him, “Sir, where are you going?” Jesus answered him, “Where I am going, you can’t follow me now—you’ll follow later.” Peter said to him, “Master, why can’t I follow you now? I’ll lay down my life for you.” Jesus answered, “You will lay down your life for me? The truth is: a rooster won’t crow for tomorrow’s dawn before you deny me three times.(John 13)

In our enthusiasm, you and I are so much like Peter! We say our willingness. We speak to ourselves of determination, plans, courage, and humility—but doing them in crisis—doing them instinctively and automatically—that following of Jesus sometimes does work—the electricity is off. And we fall on the Way of the Cross.

It is your faith, however, like that of Peter, which knows that “you will follow later.” We have—in fact—a long term determination—not to do good, not to follow rules or love with all our hearts—not to “do better”—but to do the Will of Our Father.

The Good News is that we repent. We keep finding our way back. We follow not by some mechanical imitation, but by a spirit of accepting the mystery of our common humanity. We are each—“This Human Child.” We accept our struggle—and the fact that all of us—equally—are Peter falling & rising. We follow as best we can.

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