Today's Readings
(Good Friday of the Lord's Passion)

Reading 1: Isaiah  52:13 - 53:12
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 31:2, 6, 12-13, 15-16, 17, 25
Today's Reflection:
Ms. Laila Ettefagh

Reflecting on Good Friday feels like a pretty daunting task. How could I ever condense the weight of these readings into a few comments, and in turn, process and condense my own feelings toward this day?

Today's readings are, to say the least, powerful (of course they are- it is, after all, Good Friday). In all honesty, I find it difficult to hone in on just one sentiment or verse; Isaiah speaks to Jesus' silence in the face of great suffering, Hebrews implores us to seek mercy in the face of sin, and John's gospel details the timeline and paradox of Jesus' crucifixion - His agony at the cross, and our ultimate salvation.

For me, it comes down to one verse: "and bowing his head, [Jesus] handed over his spirit," followed by our own kneeling and reflection. The key here is in the language; Jesus' spirit wasn't simply taken, pried from His clenching fist as He tried to control the situation. Rather, he "handed" it over, willingly. Without anger or resentment, Jesus forgave those who hurt Him, and gave himself to His (and our) Father.

On this Good Friday, may we all willingly put our spirit and lives in God's hands, surrendering our pride and control to He who became man to save each and every one of us.

St. John Paul II High School & St. Francis Xavier Preparatory School