Jesus speaks to the women of Jerusalem

V/. We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
R/. Because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world.

“Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me,
but weep for yourselves and for your children.
For behold, the days are coming when they will say,
'Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore,
and the breasts that never gave suck!'
Then they will begin to say to the mountains,
'Fall on us'; and to the hills, 'Cover us.'
For if they do this when the wood is green,
what will happen when it is dry?” (Lk 23:28-31).

These are the words of Jesus to the women of Jerusalem who were weeping with compassion for the Condemned One.
“Do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children.” At the time it was certainly difficult to understand the meaning of these words. They contained a prophecy that would soon come to pass.
Shortly before, Jesus had wept over Jerusalem, foretelling the terrible fate that awaited the city.
Now he seems to be referring again to that fate: “Weep for your children . . .”
Weep, because these, your very children, will be witnesses and will share in the destruction of Jerusalem, the Jerusalem which “did not know the time of her visitation” (cf. Lk 19:44).
If, as we follow Christ on the way of the Cross, our hearts are moved with pity for his suffering, we cannot forget that admonition.

“For if they do this when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?”
For our generation, which has just left a millennium behind, rather than weep for Christ crucified, it is now the time for us to recognize “the time of our visitation”. Already the dawn of the resurrection is shining forth.
“Behold, now is the acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Cor 6:2).
To each of us Christ addresses these words of the book of Revelation: “Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any one hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me. He who conquers, I will grant him to sit with me on my throne, as I myself conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne” (3:20- 21).


O Christ, you came into this world
to visit all those who await salvation.
Grant that our generation
will recognize the time of its visitation
and share in the fruits of your redemption.
Do not permit that there should be weeping for us
and for the men and women of the new century
because we have rejected our merciful Father’s outstretched hand.
To you, O Jesus, born of the Virgin Daughter of Zion,
be honour and praise for ever and ever.

R. Amen.


Our Father ...

Stabat Mater:

Let me share with you his pain
who for all my sin was slain,
who for me in torments died.