It is 4th April 2020. The readings are from Ezekiel 37:21-28; and the Gospel from John 11:45-56. As we are preparing to enter into the Holy Week, in this very peculiarly painful time for us all far from our churches and friends, the readings invite us to be united with the Lord with our basic ecclesial communities. During this time of pandemic, there is more than a need to be united with one another at home, community and globally. The first reading points out that the division among people spread far and wide. A new covenant, a new sacrifice, a new relationship, a new love, a new promise is the one God wants for God’s people. “I shall make a covenant of peace with them, an eternal covenant… I shall set my sanctuary among them forever. I shall make my home above them; I will be their God; they shall be my people.” (Jer.32:38-40). Around 16 times the phrase ‘‘eternal covenant” appears in the Old Testament so as to show the seriousness of God’s initiative in bringing us together. God brings us closer to each other without any hidden agenda. Indeed, we are all brought closer to each other more than ever during this pandemic. Closeness to each other needs emotional transparency, courage and sacrifice. Boredom, blaming, taking-for-granted, indifference, depression and many more could either threaten or thrash our love and prayer circles. More we get used to one another; more we can ignore the presence of each other that could lead us to be divided internally before it explodes externally. The responsorial Verse injects hope, “The Lord will guard us, as a shepherd guards his flock.” (Jer.31:10). The Gospel brings closer to the unfolding events of Holy Week. As Jesus fame grew after He rose Lazarus from the dead, so hatred and plan to kill Jesus was sown in the minds of people. Misguiding and misleading leaders have no room for sacrifice and uniting people in their heart. Love and unity are abundant for those who have faith in Jesus. The Eucharist unites us all always. “And the bread we break: when we eat it, we are sharing in the body of Christ. Because there is the one loaf of bread, all of us, though many, are one body, for we all share the same loaf” (1 Cor 10:16-17). Jesus is the center of the Passover whose sacrifice is surely uniting us all. May we be united for the belief we have in Jesus. May you have a safe day. God bless you.

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