Isaiah 50:4-9

4 The Lord GOD has given me the tongue of those who are taught, that I may know how to sustain with a word him that is weary. Morning by morning he wakens, he wakens my ear to hear as those who are taught. 5 The Lord GOD has opened my ear, and I was not rebellious, I turned not backward. 6 I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to those who pulled out the beard; I hid not my face from shame and spitting. 7 For the Lord GOD helps me; therefore I have not been confounded; therefore I have set my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be put to shame; 8 he who vindicates me is near. Who will contend with me? Let us stand up together. Who is my adversary? Let him come near to me. 9 Behold, the Lord GOD helps me; who will declare me guilty? Behold, all of them will wear out like a garment; the moth will eat them up. 

Matthew 26:14-25

14 Then one of the twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests 

15 and said, “What will you give me if I deliver him to you?” And they paid him thirty pieces of silver. 16 And from that moment he sought an opportunity to betray him. 17 Now on the first day of Unleavened Bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Where will you have us prepare for you to eat the passover?” 

18 He said, “Go into the city to a certain one, and say to him, ‘The Teacher says, My time is at hand; I will keep the passover at your house with my disciples.'” 

19 And the disciples did as Jesus had directed them, and they prepared the passover. 20 When it was evening, he sat at table with the twelve disciples; 

21 and as they were eating, he said, “Truly, I say to you, one of you will betray me.” 22 And they were very sorrowful, and began to say to him one after another, “Is it I, Lord?” 23 He answered, “He who has dipped his hand in the dish with me, will betray me. 24 The Son of man goes as it is written of him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! It would have been better for that man if he had not been born.” 25 Judas, who betrayed him, said, “Is it I, Master?” He said to him, “You have said so.”


THE FIRST READING prophesied the characteristics, demeanor, traits, virtues and charisms of the Son of man. All the senses of the Son of God are alive to the promptings of the Spirit. Discernment, obedience,faith and trust with a forgiving heart and a mind that do not judge or hold grudges against His adversaries are the hallmarks of the Son of the Father. Neither is he a coward,but is ever prepared to face the enemy and give an account of who and what he has been called to be! 

St MATTHEW’S GOSPEL presents circumstantial evidence that a ransom was possibly posted for Christ’s arrest.It is worth recalling that the interest of the chief priests to find and deliver the king of the people to Herod dates back to when Mary received the revelation that she was to bear the king of the jews.Mt2:1ff The wise men of the east outwitted Herod knowing that his intentions were far from being noble. 

We can deduce that Judas had at an earlier stage entered into negotiations with the chief priests on the matter of the price that they were prepared to pay. When a proposed buyer is given the option to set a price, the seller has the option to walk away without concluding a sale,or the offer may exceed or match the sellers price. Moreover the buyer needs evidence that the article is authentic and meets their prescriptions.Our Lord’s anointment was a sign that He was the Messiah and the King of the Jews such that He had the power to forgive the sin of man also. Lk 7:41-47 Sacred scripture presents only three occasions when Judas spoke. One was his objection to the anointing, two when he denied that he was to be a traitor and today when he engaged the chief priests. In all three circumstances we see both a denial and betrayal of Christ Jesus! Judas was for all tends and purposes not a sincere apostle and believer and neither was he the last.

Two crimes were leveled at Christ. The temple leaders condemned Him for committing blasphemy when He asserted that He can forgive sins which was a pretext to the second charge that He was the King of the jews which the Roman authority took offence to. Finally, our Lord’s words to Judas (v24) is rather ominous. We know the outcome of the actions of Judas. 

Today we spare a thought and prayer for those who took their own lives because no one was looking or aware of their anxieties, pain, suffering and loneliness, such that they incorrectly reasoned that they “should not have been born!” We tend to objectively or deliberately forget and not speak or remember those who took their own lives because of the hurt and pain that came from it. Let us offer a prayer for those who took their own lives because of their suffering and pain that remained unnoticed and silent. May our Lord release, be merciful and forgive our loved ones who died in these tragic circumstances.Those who are suffering are invited to reach out to a priest, someone trustworthy, for healing and deliverance. May we similarly be alive to the spiritual needs of those who are obscured from view and present ourselves as a source of hope! 

LET US PRAY: Psalms 69:8-10,21-22,3,33-34

8 I have become a stranger to my brethren, an alien to my mother’s sons. 

9 For zeal for thy house has consumed me, and the insults of those who insult thee have fallen on me. 

10 When I humbled my soul with fasting, it became my reproach. 21 They gave me poison for food, and for my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink. 22 Let their own table before them become a snare; let their sacrificial feasts be a trap. 31 This will please the LORD more than an ox or a bull with horns and hoofs. 33 For the LORD hears the needy, and does not despise his own that are in bonds. 34 Let heaven and earth praise him, the seas and everything that moves therein. 

catholicwitnessct@gmail.com    Henry R SYLVESTER              

Note: The daily scripture readings are taken from the Roman Missal which the Catholic Church use in the daily Celebration of the Holy Eucharist throughout the world.Some weekly readings may differ because of the celebration of local feast days.

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