During the six weeks of Lent 2020, Bishop Donal McKeown invites us, as individuals, as families and parish faith communities of the Diocese of Derry, to use the six Sunday Gospels of Lent to look at the life of service to which God is calling all of us, as the 2020 disciples of Jesus.
Priests and parishioners of the diocese are asked to create opportunities in their parish for discussion of each Gospel reflection.
Bishop Donal's fouth reflection for consideration is outlined below.
Fourth Sunday of Lent, 22 March 2020 Gospel: Jesus Heals the Blind Man
'He was born blind so that works of God might be displayed in Him' (John 9:3)
The Gospel of the fourth Sunday of Lent 2020 can be viewed here on CatholicIreland.Net
Reflection by Bishop Donal
In today's Gospel we encounter a man who has been born blind. This man suffers from the great drawback of physical blindness. And yet, the Gospel tells us that it is he who, in his encounter with Jesus, sees who Jesus is and guides the way in discipleship. The religious authorities - who have no physical sight impairment - are blinded by lack of trust and inability to believe.
Reflections for discussion and consideration:
- The Fourth Sunday of Lent is Laetare Sunday, the mid-point in our Lenten journey. The Latin word laetare means "rejoice". (Laetare Sunday parallels with Gaudete Sunday in Advent). We rejoice in the gift of faith. We rejoice in the Good News of the Gospel. And yet, we are we sometimes more comfortable being blind to its message. Why is this? Why do we sometimes not see our way to rejoice in it?
- In what areas has the Irish Church been blind in the past and in the present? What is needed if we are to overcome that blindness?
- Today's Gospel invites us to focus on the spiritual aspects of sight and light, rather than the physical ability to see. How can we be beacons of light and encouragement to fellow parishioners in 2020, enabling them to share in the joys of building God's kingdom and seeing Jesus as the One who heals and offers hope?
+ Donal McKeown
Bishop of Derry
Liturgy music suggestions for Sunday, 22 March
- Amazing grace
- How lovely on the mountains (Our God reigns)
- Praise, my soul, the King of heaven