Fourth Sunday of Lent
March 26, 2017
The Lord is my shepherd,
I shall not want.
— Psalm 23:1
This Sunday has the traditional name of Laetare Sunday, a day of joy because Lent has reached the half-way point. This is also the Sunday that the second scrutiny is prayed with those elect preparing to be baptized at the Easter Vigil. We will pray the second scrutiny with our elect from St. Thomas at the 9:30 a.m. Mass today. But the whole parish community is encouraged to pray for our elect, as well as reflect on our own call to continual conversion. The gospel today focuses on the cure of the man born blind, and the first reading invites us to see as God sees and not as human beings see.
The second reading also fits this focus, stressing the importance of living in the light rather than in darkness. This is a call for those of us who are baptized to a deeper conversion. How we see situations and other people, strongly affects how we respond to them. Much of our growth in the spiritual life is a matter of learning to see things as God does, especially when in stark contrast to society’s view of things.
This year, more than three million people will have cataract surgery. After years of looking out through dirty windows, they will have clear vision restored by the transplant of a small lens. It is nothing short of a miracle! I know that after I had cataract surgery, I was astounded by the clarity and intensity of colors that I could now see. I’m sure many of you have experienced that too. Like the blind man in today’s Gospel, we declared “and now I can see!” But this miracle of Jesus teaches us that even if we have good vision, we are sometimes blind in other ways.
May we use these remaining weeks of Lent to see where we need to correct our vision so that the light of Christ shines through us.
First Reading — As the prophet Samuel anointed David with oil, the spirit of the Lord rushed upon David and remained with him from that day forward (1 Samuel 16:1b, 6-7, 10-13a).
Psalm — The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want (Psalm 23).
Second Reading — You who were once darkness are now light in the Lord. Live as children of light (Ephesians 5:8-14).
Gospel — The man who was blind from birth proclaimed: The one called Jesus made clay with his saliva, anointed my eyes with it, and told me to wash. When I washed, I was able to see! (John 9:1-41 [1, 6-9, 13-17, 34-38])
Readings for the Week
Mon: Is 65:17-21; Ps 30:2, 4-6, 11-13b; Jn 4:43-54
Tues: Ez 47:1-9, 12; Ps 46:2-3, 5-6, 8-9; Jn 5:1-16
Wed: Is 49:8-15; Ps 145:8-9, 13cd-14, 17-18; Jn 5:17-30
Thurs: Ex 32:7-14; Ps 106:19-23; Jn 5:31-47
Fri: Wis 2:1a, 12-22; Ps 34:17-21, 23; Jn 7:1-2, 10, 25-30
Sat: Jer 11:18-20; Ps 7:2-3, 9bc-12; Jn 7:40-53
Sun: Ez 37:12-14; Ps 130:1-8; Rom 8:8-11; Jn 11:1-45 [3-7, 17, 20-27, 33b-45]