Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Tuesday's Rosary Meditation:Sorrowful Mystery-The Crowning of Thorns

A reading from the book of John 19:2-5

2 And the soldiers wove a crown out of thorns and placed it on his head, and clothed him in a purple cloak,
3 and they came to him and said, "Hail, King of the Jews!" And they struck him repeatedly.
4 Once more Pilate went out and said to them, "Look, I am bringing him out to you, so that you may know that I  find no guilt in him."
5 So Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple cloak. And he said to them, "Behold, the man!"


Jesus is abused, mocked and humiliated. The crown of thorns is gouged into His head. Blood runs down His face and into His eyes. At the same time that this is happening, the soldiers strike Him repeatedly, they spit on Him, and they laugh at Him.  This is probably like any other day for these soldiers. They get their kicks our of humiliating and abusing their prisoners. But this time it is God whom they mock and abuse.

Personal Reflection

I find all the Sorrowful Mysteries difficult to meditate on but this one is particularly bothersome. I feel anger toward the soldiers and think to myself, How dare they do that to Jesus! 
But they didn't know it was the Son of God. What does it matter if it's God whom they mock or just another prisoner? It gets to me on two different levels. The first level is remembering the times I was made fun of, mocked, laughed at, even spat at, (junior high anyone?). I know how terrible it feels to be in that position. The second level is that I've been on the other end and did the mocking and humiliating. I've been the one to belittle someone and get some sick enjoyment out of it. Somehow, Whenever guilt crept in, I would find a way to think I was justified . Meditating on this mystery brings back these childhood memories from both sides of myself-Being mocked and being the mocker. Jesus pitied these soldiers that were mistreating Him. "Father forgive them, they know not what they do..."
It becomes an exercise in forgiveness. I have to forgive those who hurt me if I expect forgiveness for the times I've hurt others. I think that is the main take away from this Mystery. It exercises our ability to forgive because we've all been in a similar situation- perhaps not to extent that Jesus experienced, but that's all the more reason why we must be ready to forgive those who mock us.  

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