“Our Lenten journey is drawing to a close; today’s readings remind us of what lies ahead, with Ezekiel’s vision of new life for a valley of bones and Paul’s promise that the Spirit that will ‘give life to our mortal bodies’. The gospel reading from John tells the story of the raising of Lazarus. This sequence – carefully crafted as a prelude to the passion narrative – prepares us for what is to come; Jesus confronts death itself and emerges victorious.” — The Emmaus Series, John Thornhill sm
As we observe the final Lenten Sunday, a great part of our world is experiencing the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, causing us to become more focused on life and death. In Australia, as is the case in many countries, churches and other places of worship are closed to help prevent the spread of the virus amongst congregations. While most of us are isolated in our homes, let us pray for those dedicated souls who get up each day to continue their work in governments, communities, clinics, hospitals, and labs, being physically present in their mission to help those who have been affected by this virus.
Lord look upon your children
The doctors, nurses, soldiers, leaders
All the front liners, have pity on them
And keep them away from harm.
Lord my heart is with them
In their anguish and sorrow
In their desires for healing
And protecting all of humanity.
My heart cries and feels empathy
Please heal those infected with COVID-19
Heal them and give them hope and joy
Amidst their sufferings and sacrifices.
My heart cries with sorrow
For all our sins, failures and shortcomings
Indifference and lack of love
Have pity on us all and grant us healing and pardon.
Once you were with us on earth
Over two thousand years ago
You experienced sufferings and condemnation
But not sin.
You have loved all men and women
Old and young of different languages and colours
You offered yourself on the cross
You died for our salvation.
Lord, we love you
Lord, we thank you
Lord, we remain in your love forever
This is the cry of my heart! Amen.