Lent: Friday of the Fourth Week

“Let us condemn him to a shameful death; for according to his own words, God will take care of him.” (Wisdom 2:20)

Origen of Alexandria (part 2 of Pope Benedict’s reflections on Origen) comments on this verse from the First Reading proclaimed at Mass today:

“My Lord Jesus Christ, when he assumed the flesh of the Virgin for our salvation, was surely glorified, because “he came to seek what was lost,” though he was not “glorified gloriously.” In fact, it is said precisely of him, “We saw him, and he had neither beauty nor splendor, and his face was more to be despised than all the sons of mortals.” He was glorified also when he went to the cross and suffered death. Do you know why he was glorified? He said, “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son, so that your Son may glorify you.” For him, therefore, even the passion of the cross was glory. This glory was not glorious, however, but humble. Finally, it is said of him, “He humbled himself even to death, death on a cross,” and of this also the prophet had foretold, “Let us condemn him to a shameful death.” But Isaiah also says of him, “He bore his judgment in humiliation.” Thus in all these events the Lord was glorified, but humbly, so to speak. He was not “glorified gloriously.” (Homilies on Exodus, 6)

O God, Who have prepared
fitting helps for us in our weakness,
grant, we pray, that we may receive
their healing effects with joy
and reflect them in a holy way of life.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son,
Who lives and reigns with You
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Glory to the Father
and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning,
is now, and will be forever. Amen