Fifth Sunday of Lent – Year A

by Fr Z Ngwenya

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Readings  First: Ezekiel 37:12-14
Respons. Psalm: Ps. 130: 1-8
Second: Romans 8:8-11
Gospel: John 11:1-45

The God of Christianity is a God of life. He is the Lord of life. He is the God of the living and not of the dead. God’s glory, as St. Irenaeus says, is that man lives, in his fullness and integrity. To bring this about, God uses every means with inexhaustible patience and fidelity, as is reflected throughout the long history of God’s relations with his people, Israel. One stage corresponds to the exile in Babylon, between the destruction of the temple and the city of Jerusalem. Exiled in Babylon, the people, and especially its hope in the future, languish and die. This situation prompts Ezekiel to find a symbol in the dry bones, stripped of flesh and dead. Through the prophet, God reveals to the people that he will raise them from the graves in which they are now, that he will give them new life and bring them back to the land of the living, the Promised Land. Continue reading “Fifth Sunday of Lent – Year A”

Fourth Sunday of Lent – Year A

by Fr Z Ngwenya

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First Reading: 1 Sam 16: 1. 4. 6-7. 10-13;
Responsorial Psalm: Ps. 23: 1-6
Second: Eph 5: 8-14
Gospel: Jn 9: 1-41

From the beginning, Christianity has manifested itself as an amazing paradox; perhaps, this is the key to today’s readings. God does not look at appearances, as men do, but at the heart. This is the reason he chose the youngest of Jesse’s sons to anoint him king of Israel. The Christian paradox does not surprise us. The Christian God is the one who is closest and, at the same time, the most remote. He is omnipotent but comes to us as weak. He is a loving Father, with an interior that is maternal. He is spiritual and invisible but makes himself visible in the transparency of flesh. In the human way of evaluating persons and things, the greater the task the more one looks for the best trained leader, with a strong and attractive personality, and a greatest number of qualities. In today’s first reading, God reveals he does just the opposite: he chooses the little, that which does not count in the eyes of men. With this paradox, God highlights what matters most in a mission: not just personal qualities but the strength and power of God’s Spirit. Continue reading “Fourth Sunday of Lent – Year A”

Sacrificium at the time of Coronavirus

by Fr Zweli Ngwenya

From Rome where he shares a house with 193 priests, Fr Zweli Ngwenya reflects on our lives being affected by the Coronavirus pandemic.

Sacrificium is the Latin word for sacrifice. In Christian spirituality, sacrifice can be defined as that act that makes us to be what we truly are. As Christians we are the body of Christ and we can never be such without doing some sacrifice. Sacrifice is not only an act of love but it is also a sign of love. The greatest sacrifice was on the cross when our Lord showed us how much he loved us; he gave up his life for our sake. Christians all over the world today proclaim this love. We know we are loved because Jesus showed us this love. Continue reading “Sacrificium at the time of Coronavirus”

Third Sunday of Lent – Year A

by Fr Z Ngwenya

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First Reading: Ex 17: 3-7;
Responsorial psalm: Ps. 95: 1-2, 6-9.
Second: Rom 5: 1-2. 5-8
Gospel: Jn 4: 5-42

Brothers and sisters, we as the pilgrim church here on earth have been immersed in the history of salvation. When we speak about the history of salvation we speak about the theological expression of the divine initiative and of his loving presence and dialogue with mankind. God is always present, he dialogues with us, and is always taking the initiative in this dialogue. In the first reading we see that God who chose the people of Israel, does not abandon them in their need, but fulfils his promise of fidelity in the pact of alliance and accompanies them with his power in their wanderings through the desert. This divine presence is not always visible. In fact, the opposite seems true: that God has forgotten his people. The children of Israel cry out in hunger and thirst in nostalgia for the past. God is moved and intervenes effectively by sending manna, abundance of water, and gives them the hope of a land of milk and honey. Then the people realise God is truly faithful and they renew their confidence in him and his elect, Moses.
Continue reading “Third Sunday of Lent – Year A”