My Dear Sisters and Brothers! When Jesus went to the desert Satan tried to deter Jesus from the mission of salvation. That plan failed. Jesus didn’t retract from the mission of salvation. ‘Jesus went into Galilee.’ However Galilee was not his final destination. It was a gate to the whole world, including ours here in Australia. This succinct testimony given by St Mark is not the only proof of Jesus being committed to the mission of salvation. The mother-in-law story I’ve told you is another proof of Jesus continuing on his mission of salvation. On that dark day in 1943 when evil seemed to triumph Maryanne’s choice: ‘I will go instead of her’ was like a ray of sun piercing through the dark clouds. She did what Jesus did when he offered his life to save people.
At the beginning of Lent the Book of Genesis, points to the bow called a rainbow. A rainbow is a pretty thing, isn’t it? However each rainbow reminds us of that covenant God made with Noah and the whole humankind after the Great Flood. The punishment for human sins God will take upon himself. That’s why the bow called rainbow aims at the sky, at God. It did happen on that dark day we call Good Friday. What’s good about that day? Jesus took upon himself what should strike us for our sins. The first Pope, St Peter wrote: ‘Christ himself, innocent though he was, died once for sins, died for the guilty, to lead us to God.’
My Dear fellow believers! At the beginning of Lent 2021, take heart because Jesus enters your life again to fight for the beauty and dignity of your heart, soul and body. At the words of consecration: ‘This is my Body. This is my Blood’ we will witness Jesus descend not just on the altar. We will witness our Blessed Lord coming again to our own life, to our own Galilee. Although we don’t sing Alleluia during these days leading to Easter but as Church we cannot contain our joy and gratitude even in Lent. That’s why we have found a way around to do it. We do it by proclaiming: ‘Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ, king of endless glory.’ We are creative, aren’t we?
We do praise our King of endless glory for dying for us on that first Good Friday and for coming to save us in our real life in February 2021. We do so with deep hope that our own real life story can become a holy story like the story of Maryanne who was beatified in 1999. Now she is venerated as Blessed Maryanne. It is a great mother-in-law story indeed. For that story we too say: ‘Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ, king of endless glory.’