Friday, April 18, 2014

Homily for Good Friday




Homily for Good Friday
(Scriptures for today's liturgy)

Audio for homily


Audio Note: I encourage you to listen to the audio as you read the text.  There are musical elements in the audio that you'll miss without listening.  The Passion was proclaimed in a semi-dark church, with light centered on the Crucifix in the sanctuary and I preached in the same shadows.  After the first musical refrain, the people just joined in as it repeated.  Finally, there's a little static up to 00:25 but from there on it's clear!
 

The suffering and death of the crucified Jesus
stare us in the face.
What are we to do with this?
What are we to do with the suffering of Jesus?
the death of Jesus?
What are we to do with the love of Christ
who laid down his pure and innocent life for us,
the sinful and guilty?
What are we to do with the death of Jesus?

We hold the death of the Lord deep in our hearts.
Living, now we remain with Jesus the Christ.

After supper with his friends on the night before he died
Jesus went into the garden to pray - and his betrayer was there.
Judas was there, and I was there, and you were there,
all of us were there –
• betraying his perfect love for us  - with our selfishness and sins,
• betraying the innocent one with our transgressions –
• betraying him unto death.
And what are we to do with the death of Jesus?

We hold the death of the Lord deep in our hearts.
Living, now we remain with Jesus the Christ.

And later in the courtyard,
Peter, just hours before filled with faith and bravado -
Peter denied that he even knew Jesus.

• And we were in that same courtyard,
denying, many more than three times,
denying our faith in Jesus.

• We were in that courtyard denying him
with our fear of being known as believers,
with our reluctance to name Jesus the Lord of our lives,
with our desire to protect our sophisticated selves
and enhance how others perceive us…

•We were there in the courtyard,
denying by word and deed that we even know Jesus,
denying him unto death.
And what are we to do with the death of Jesus?

We hold the death of the Lord deep in our hearts.
Living, now we remain with Jesus the Christ.

• With the chief priests we handed Jesus over to death,
hiding behind the law to shield our unjust deeds.

• With Pilate in the praetorium
we condemned Jesus to death by our playing with the truth.

• With the crowds we called for Jesus’ death
by going along with what everyone’s saying.

We conspired, by our selfishness and sin
to condemn Jesus.
And what are we to do with the death of Jesus?

We hold the death of the Lord deep in our hearts.
Living, now we remain with Jesus the Christ.

• We hold the death of the Lord deep in our hearts
because by the mercy and grace of Jesus
his death is the forgiveness of our selfishness and sin.

• We hold the death of the Lord deep in our hearts
because in the offering of his heart and life
our hearts our healed,  and our lives redeemed.

• We hold the death of the Lord deep in our hearts
because our hearts can know no greater love
than the love of One who lays down his life for ours.

Such is the mystery of our redemption
in the suffering and death of Jesus.
In the face of it, we have nothing to offer in return
and so, this is what we do:

We hold the death of the Lord deep in our hearts.
Living, now we remain with Jesus the Christ.

We hold the death of the Lord deep in our hearts
because his dying is our living
-- and so we remain with Jesus the Christ.

It is Good Friday and the suffering and death of the crucified Jesus
stare us in the face.
What are we to do with this?
What are we to do with the love of Christ in his suffering for us?
What are we to do with the love of Christ in his dying for us?
What are we to do with him  who laid down his pure and innocent life
for us  - the sinful and guilty?

What are we to do with the suffering and death of Jesus?

We hold the death of the Lord deep in our hearts.
Living, now we remain with Jesus the Christ. 


Here's a recording of the whole of David Haas's song, "Now We Remain" from which comes the refrain in my homily:

 Now We Remain - Hangad - YouTube by BUKAS PALAD on Grooveshark



 

     
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