Posted by: livingscripture | March 29, 2010

Monday of Holy Week

From the Word of the Day

 Mary took a liter of costly perfumed oil made from genuine aromatic nard and anointed the feet of Jesus and dried them with her hair; the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil.

                              John 12: 1-11

 How should we live this Word

 This incredible gesture of human and divine value happens in the context of a warm friendship.  Lazarus, Martha, and Mary were friends of Jesus.  Jesus went to them often.  This gesture of supreme human value expresses the sentiments of a pure and lively love full of admiration for the Teacher.  Mary loves without calculating and without evaluating.  It is the fragrance of this love that permeates the whole house.  Love is always radiant and diffusive. 

 In contrast, the calculations of Judas express a stingy and poor love proper to one who begrudges love.  In the face of Judas’ miserable objection that this is a waste and the oil could have been sold and the money given to the poor, Jesus’ responds, “Leave her alone.  Let her keep this for the day of my burial.” 

 Mary’s gesture is not servile like that of a slave who washes the master’s feet.  On the contrary, hers is a gesture of adoration.  She adores the body of the One who became a gift of love for us.  This is what we are called to do in every Eucharist.  At the proclamation “This is my body offered…This is my blood shed for you,” we are called like Mary, to kneel and adore, placing at His service our entire selves!  It is the service of praise!

 Today as I pause for silent contemplation,  I will seek to penetrate this stupendous gesture of Mary.  I will kneel before Jesus and remain at the service of praise.  I will sing out my gratitude for such a great gift.

 Lord Jesus, grant that I may never deem it a waste of time to stay in Your presence!  May the fragrance of this generous and loving gesture be expanded in humble and joyful witness.

 The voice of Elena Bosetti, a contemporary woman

 Mary of Bethany scandalizes the guests with her ‘waste’.  But Jesus appreciates and understands because the waste expresses the measure of her love.  She gives everything.

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