Father Rick’s Two Minute Homily for Thursday, 4th Week in Easter 2023
May 4, 2023, John 13:16-20 https://bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/050423.cfm
Do We Have a Judas?
Today Jesus is handing us the power to be a servant with him, especially to people who wrong us. It is a disposition that graced the martyrs of our Church down through the centuries, and it’s a grace to remain in Jesus, whatever circumstance we find ourselves in.
On Holy Thursday, when Jesus washed his disciples’ feet, a task reserved for a servant girl or boy, he made himself the least significant at the table. The same humble disposition of Jesus empowered him to offer a piece of bread from the same dish to Judas Iscariot, who that night would betray him.
Judas raised his heel against Jesus; he kicked Jesus when he was down, completely vulnerable. To reveal what our heavenly Father is like, Jesus offered Judas the bread, a sign of intimacy and friendship.
Do we have a Judas? When a dear friend hurts us deeply, as Judas hurt Jesus, and we allow our Lord to take that hurt to himself to die on the cross with him, our focus moves from ourselves to the Lord.
But what happens when that same person keeps coming back and raising their heel against us repeatedly? The temptation is to get up and defend ourselves. After all, we have rights, but not if we wash their feet or offer them bread from the same dish.
When persecuted for their faith, the martyrs allowed Jesus to purify their love and make it more innocent like his. “No messenger outranks the one who sent him. Once you know all these things, blessed will you be if you put them into practice.”
Of the martyrs in the early Church, St. Ignatius said, “I am the wheat of Christ, ground by the teeth of the beast to become pure bread.” When someone hurts us, see Jesus pouring water over the feet of our persecutors as we dry them with a towel of mercy.
Ignite the Fire of the Holy Spirit!
Fr. Rick Pilger, IC
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