Ash Wednesday 2017

A little about the Season of Lent. Liturgically, the weekday readings are divided into two parts: from Ash Wednesday through the third week of Lent the Gospels come from the Synoptics and deal with conversion of heart, to living the Gospel message; in the second part of the Season, the Gospels are continual readings from John (except for those parts which will be proclaimed on a Sunday). The message is Christological: who is Christ?. How do the two sections fit together (the shift from the ethical to the Christological)? The purpose of part one is to bring us all to “compunction,” a deflating of our egos, the challenge to live up to Jesus’ demands for His disciples, which, on the surface, might seem beyond us. It’s like a balloon being “punctured” and deflated. By being reminded time and time again of our falling short of the mark, we should come to realize our radical need for salvation not how good we are. This shifts us from the demands of Jesus to His person. John presents Jesus as the Savior of the World. The catch is that Jesus can only save those who know they need saving. Confronted with our own powerlessness, we pray for our salvation.

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