V/. Adoramus te, Christe, et benedicimus tibi.
From the Gospel according to Mark 14: 55, 61b-62a, 64b
Now the chief priests and the whole council sought testimony against Jesus to put him to death; but they found none. The high priest asked him, "Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?". And Jesus said, "I am!" And they all condemned him as deserving death.
The Sanhedrin was the court of justice of God's people. Now this court condemns Christ, the Son of the Blessed One, and judges him to be deserving of death.
The Innocent One is condemned "because he has blasphemed", say the judges, and they tear their garments. Yet we know from the Evangelist that they did so through envy and hatred.
St John says that ultimately the high priest had spoken in God's Name: only by allowing his innocent Son to be condemned could God the Father save the guilty brothers of Jesus.
Across the centuries, hosts of innocent people have been condemned to atrocious sufferings. Some cry out against the injustice, but it is they, the innocent, who, in communion with Christ, the Innocent One, atone for the sins of the world.
Jesus, you are not concerned to prove your innocence, you are solely intent upon restoring to man the righteousness that he lost through sin.
We were your enemies, there was no way for us to change our condition. You let yourself be condemned in order to grant us forgiveness. Saviour, help us to avoid bringing condemnation upon ourselves on the last day. "Iudex ergo cum sedebit, quicquid latet apparebit; nil inultum remanebit. Iuste iudex ultionis, donum fac remissionis ante diem rationis".
Pater noster, qui es in cælis:
O quam tristis et afflicta
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