Sunday, March 13, 2016

Neither do I condemn you... I am the light of the world

Book of Isaiah 43:16-21. 
Thus says the LORD, who opens a way in the sea and a path in the mighty waters, 
Who leads out chariots and horsemen, a powerful army, Till they lie prostrate together, never to rise, snuffed out and quenched like a wick. 
Remember not the events of the past, the things of long ago consider not; 
See, I am doing something new! Now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? In the desert I make a way, in the wasteland, rivers. 
Wild beasts honor me, jackals and ostriches, For I put water in the desert and rivers in the wasteland for my chosen people to drink, 
The people whom I formed for myself, that they might announce my praise. 

Psalms 126(125):1-2ab.2cd-3.4-5.6. 
When the LORD brought back the captives of Zion, 
we were like men dreaming. 
Then our mouth was filled with laughter, 
and our tongue with rejoicing. 

Then they said among the nations, 
"the LORD has done great things for them." 
The LORD has done great things for us; 
we are glad indeed. 

Restore our fortunes, O LORD, 
like the torrents in the southern desert. 
Those that sow in tears 
shall reap rejoicing. 

Although they go forth weeping, 
carrying the seed to be sown, 
they shall come back rejoicing, 
carrying their sheaves. 

Letter to the Philippians 3:8-14. 
Brothers and sisters: I consider everything as a loss because of the supreme good of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have accepted the loss of all things and I consider them so much rubbish, that I may gain Christ 
and be found in him, not having any righteousness of my own based on the law but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God, depending on faith 
to know him and the power of his resurrection and (the) sharing of his sufferings by being conformed to his death, 
if somehow I may attain the resurrection from the dead. 
It is not that I have already taken hold of it or have already attained perfect maturity, but I continue my pursuit in hope that I may possess it, since I have indeed been taken possession of by Christ (Jesus). 
Brothers, I for my part do not consider myself to have taken possession. Just one thing: forgetting what lies behind but straining forward to what lies ahead, 
I continue my pursuit toward the goal, the prize of God's upward calling, in Christ Jesus. 

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 8:1-11. 
Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. 
But early in the morning he arrived again in the temple area, and all the people started coming to him, and he sat down and taught them. 
Then the scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery and made her stand in the middle. 
They said to him, "Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery. 
Now in the law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?"
They said this to test him, so that they could have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and began to write on the ground with his finger.
But when they continued asking him, he straightened up and said to them, "Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her."
Again he bent down and wrote on the ground. 
And in response, they went away one by one, beginning with the elders. So he was left alone with the woman before him. 
Then Jesus straightened up and said to her, "Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?" 
She replied, "No one, sir." Then Jesus said, "Neither do I condemn you. Go, (and) from now on do not sin any more." 

“Neither do I condemn you... I am the light of the world” (Jn 8,11-12)
O my God, my Creator, who love to forgive,
Make the brightness of your inaccessible light grow greater over me
To fill my heart with joy.
Be not angry; do not forsake me!
But make my soul radiant with your light,
For your light, O my God, is you…

I have gone aside from your straight road, the divine road,
And have fallen lamentably from the glory that had been given me.
I have been stripped of the shining robe, the divine robe,
And fallen into the darkness; now I lie in darkness
And do not realize I am deprived of light…
For if you have shone from on high, if you have appeared in the shadows,
If you have come into the world, O Merciful One,
If you have desired to live with men
In our human condition, for love of humankind,
If… you are said to be the light of the world (Jn 8:12)
And we do not even see you,
Is this not because we are completely blind
And more unfortunate than the blind, O my Christ?...

As for you, who are all good things, you give them unceasingly
to your servants, to those who see your light…
Whoever possesses you, truly possesses in you all other things.
May I not be deprived of you, O Lord! May I not be deprived of you, Creator!
May I not be deprived of you, O Merciful One, I, the humble stranger…
I beg you, set me with you,
Even if I have multiplied sins more than everyone else.
Receive my prayer like that of the publican (Lk 18:13)
Or like that of the sinful woman, Lord, even though I weep not as she did (Lk 7:38)…
Are you not the source of pity, the spring of mercy and river of goodness?
Therefore, on this account have pity on me!
Ah yes, you who had hands and feet nailed to the cross
And your side pierced with the lance, you the All-Compassionate,
Have pity on me and snatch me away from the eternal burning…
That on that day I may stand before you without condemnation
To be welcomed into your wedding chamber
In which I shall share your happiness, good Master,
In inexpressible joy throughout the ages. Amen.

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