John 12, 20-33:
Sunday 21 March 2021 (5th T C B)
The apostles were approached by pagans who wanted to get to know Jesus. Possibly attracted by his fame and his miracles. And Jesus responds with a phrase that would fill them with amazement: “Truly I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains unfruitful; but if it dies, it bears much fruit”.
The time of his Passion is drawing near and again he wants to make the way very clear: “Whoever wishes to serve me, let him take up his cross and follow me”. At no time did he say that the following would be easy. Of course it is more rewarding to follow the Jesus of miracles than the one who was nailed to the cross.
We all crave health, triumph and honours more than sacrifice or failure. But salvation does not come by the boast of power, but by the cross. It is more pleasant to witness a miracle than to turn the other cheek, to forgive up to seventy times seven or to love one’s enemies.
Jesus tells us: “He who loves himself loses himself; whoever follows me, where I am, my servant will be”.
The way of the cross is the way that leads to resurrection.
Juan Ramón Gómez Pascual, cmf