Homily ·Lent
By Archbishop Gomez
Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels
April 06, 2012

My dear brothers and sisters in Christ,1

Once again we have re-lived the drama of our Lord’s passion and death. And really there are no more words for us to say.

In the Gospel we have just heard, our Lord tells us: “It is finished.” And it is.

His “hour” has come. The hour in which God fulfills his loving plan for history, by making a new covenant in the blood of his only Son.

Today we see the mystery of God’s love — a love that is willing to die for us. Not because we “deserve” it. Not because of any works we have done on our own. But simply because God loves us. Simply because each of us is precious in his eyes.

God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son.2 For you. And for me.

Cuando vemos a Jesús sufriendo en la cruz, entendemos la grandeza del Amor de Dios por nosotros. Cada uno de nosotros. Como si cada uno fueramos el único. Cada uno de nosotros puede decir con San Pablo: Jesus, “me amo y se entrego por mi.”3

He made himself an offering for our sins, as the prophet Isaiah tells us in today’s first reading. So today we feel very sorry for our sins.

Jesus said that he would be lifted up and that he would draw all men and women to him.4

So today, my brothers and sisters, we see him lifted up on his cross. And we need to look at him, the One we have pierced. We need to open our hearts to him — as he opened his heart for us.5

We need to pray and we need to reflect on our lives in the shadow of his cross. We need to look up from the foot of the cross and talk to Jesus. Why have You loved me so much? Why have You given everything for me? What are You expecting from my life?

Jesus has already told us when he was with us. To be his disciples we need to deny ourselves, take up our own cross, and follow him.6

We all have different crosses to bear; different responsibilities; different sufferings and different burdens.

But all of us are called to follow the pattern of life that Jesus shows us. We need to imitate him and the way of his cross. We are called to live according to his example of unselfish love.

En la segunda lectura de hoy, escuchamos: “A pesar de que era el Hijo, aprendió a obedecer padeciendo” Nosotros también tenemos que aprender esto, queridos hermanos y hermanas.

Dios nos llama a que seamos sus hijos queridísimos, su pueblo santo. Estamos llamados a hacer de nuestras vidas algo hermoso que podamos ofrecer a Dios en sacrificio. Estamos llamados a la santidad en todo lo que hacemos –a través de actos de amor, sacrificio y misericordia.

Love and sacrifice. That is what we see on the cross today. And that is what God wants to see in each of our lives. Love and sacrifice — doing everything out of love for others and out of love for him — this is the true source of our Christian lives.

This is the way to live and to be truly happy. When we look at the cross, we see his promise: That if we give our life for the sake of Jesuand his Gospel, we will find happiness and salvation.7

So today my brothers and sisters, on this beautiful Good Friday — let’s begin again! Let’s begin again to love Jesus and to serve him with our lives. A half-way love is not good enough. A part-time love will never justify all that Jesus has suffered for us.

Volvamos a comenzar de Nuevo poniendo más amor en todo lo que hacemos y decimos cada día. Ofreciendo pequeños sacrificios cada día –haciéndolo todo por amor a Jesús. Tratando de ser más obedientes y procurando hacer la voluntad de Dios en todas las circunstancias de nuestras vidas.

In his last act on the cross, Jesus gave us his mother to be our mother: “Behold, your mother.”

So let us stay close to the Blessed Virgin Mary as she stands at the foot of the cross. Let us ask her today, on this Good Friday, to help us to accept the things that come to us in our lives as the will of our Father. And let us ask her to help us to take up our cross every day and follow Jesus, her Son and our brother.

1. Readings (Good Friday, Year B): Isa. 52:13-53:12; Ps. 32:2, 6, 12-13, 15-17, 25; Heb. 4:14-16; 5:7-9; John 18:1-19:42.

2. John 3:16.

3. Gal. 2:20.

4. John 12:32.

5. Zech. 12:10; John 19:37; Rev. 1:7.

6. Matt. 16:24.

7. Matt. 16:25; Mark 8:35.

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