This Fourth Sunday of Lent is known as “Laetare Sunday.” The title is taken from the opening antiphon for the Mass. The Latin is translated “Rejoice, Jerusalem, and all who love her. Be joyful….” This sentiment expresses our joy in anticipation of the Resurrection of the Lord.
Today’s Gospel (John 9, 1-41) is one of the three long and powerful Gospels that occupy this middle stretch of Lent. To enter into the account of the Man Born Blind: are you familiar with the “blind spot” in a vehicle? It is an area around the vehicle that cannot be directly observed by the driver. In real life, we all have blind spots – in our marriages, our parenting, our work habits, our experience of parish life, and our personalities. We often wish to remain in the dark, or even prefer darkness to light.
It is even possible for people of faith in our day to be like the Pharisees of old: religious in worship, in frequenting the Sacraments, in prayer-life, in stewardship, and in knowledge of the Bible – but blind to the poverty, injustice, and pain around us. Lent, however, is doing its level best to remind us that Jesus wants to heal our blind spots. We need to continue to ask Him to remove from us the root causes of our blindness, among them, self-centeredness, greed, anger, hatred, prejudice, jealousy, and hardness of heart.
Let us pray. “God our Father, help us see Christ more clearly, love Him more dearly, and follow Him more nearly – day by day. Amen.”
Please join us this week for our Lenten Mission! Fr. Pat Hannon, CSC will join us for a series of Lenten talks and stories from his latest book Such Dizzy Natural Happiness: A Long Loving Look at the Lord’s Prayer. We will gather in the church Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday at 7pm for Fr. Pat’s talks and a time of prayer.