The WORD in Other Words by Fr Jay Francis Flandez SVD (Hongkong)
Tuesday Holy Week
John 13:21-33, 36-38
Betrayal is a very painful human experience. A Filipina working in Hongkong shared with me her experience: betrayal by her husband. She could bear the loneliness and the abusive remarks of her employers, but “when I heard that my husband betrayed me, it was so painful and unbearable.” she contemplated suicide but the fear of God and pity for her children deterred her from doing so.
Jesus in today ‘s gospel was betrayed by Judas, one of his own men. But this betrayal would lead to the fulfillment of his mission — his passion, death and resurrection.
Judas handed over Jesus to the soldiers of the High Priest because he was expecting Jesus to be the liberator of the Jews from Roman oppression. Apparently it was turning out differently. In his disappointment, he betrayed Jesus.
I told the Filipina not to allow her emotions or anger betray her. Instead she should focus on her purpose for working abroad, that is, so that her children will finish their education.
When we allow our hurts and pains to control us, we will never find peace and direction in our life. Jesus did not allow his frustration to stop his mission. We have all kinds of disappointments and frustrations, but we should focus on our mission in life.
The celebration of the Holy Week will become meaningful when we forgive those people who betrayed us or who hurt us. Do not allow your experience of being betrayed to lead to another betrayal by disobeying the commandments of God.
Merciful Father, thank you for forgiving us and grant us the courage to forgive those who hurt us and the humility to ask forgiveness from those whom we hurt. Amen.