Easter blessings from UCAN
There is no more important week in the year for Christians than this Holy Week. We call it Holy because of the mystery we celebrate - God's gift of His son who loves us to his death on Calvary and beyond.
Because of that love, we wish each other Happy Easter even when we know there is a lot of tragedy about it - Good Friday. As Christians, we know that what we see happening with and in Jesus goes to the heart of what we know from our own experience of life.
At the Second Vatican Council, the Christian lives we all lead were described as being shares in the Paschal Mystery. We have our share in the death and resurrection of Jesus every day. Our lives are part of the Paschal Mystery.
At UCAN, we work to describe that mystery in the unfolding tragedies and astonishing blessings of the people we seek out and report, feature and comment on.
While at times deeply distressing work, this effort of ours gets its coherence in the same way the death of Jesus did - because of the astonishing grace of a God who never gives up on life and love.
Because of that, we can wish you Happy Easter.
Fr. Michael Kelly SJ
"The Pharisees Ask For A Sign"
- February 14, 2011
But Jesus refuses. He knows whatâ€™s behind this seemingly innocuous question. The Pharisees have already made up their minds that Jesus is a threat to their understanding of the Law, so if they ask for a sign it is just to trip him up, to catch him out. This is no genuine request. Itâ€™s the laying of a trap. Their very motives are suspect.
Jesus has just worked one of the most impressive signs of all â€“ the multiplication of the loaves and fishes, and the feeding of the four thousand. If this does not impress the Pharisees, what will? What are they really after?
All through his public ministry Jesus worked many, many signs â€“ his miracles. As signs they pointed to the fact that he had a divine mission and was destined to achieve it. But he didnâ€™t want his miracles to become sensations and distractions. He wanted them to establish a bond of faith between the person healed and himself. It is this bond which saves, not the spectacular sign.
But not everyone saw it like that. The Pharisees, especially the Scribes, werenâ€™t humble enough to put their trust in this rabbi from Galilee. They always felt that Jesus had to prove himself even further. Hence their demand for a â€˜special signâ€™, and hence too, Jesusâ€™s stern refusal to give in to that demand.