A Reflection on the Readings from Year A on the Fifth Sunday in Lent.
Reading I: Ezekiel 37:12-14
Responsorial Psalm: 130:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7-8
Reading II: Romans 8:8-11
Gospel: John 11:1-45
Year C Readings
Our Mass reflection is brought to us by 12-year-old Joseph Bader, a 6th grader at Cryar Intermediate School whose favorite activities include building with Lego, playing baritone, Minecraft, Boy Scouts, and altar serving.
This week’s Old Testament reading foreshadows what happens in the Gospel reading. Ezekiel says, “O my people, I will open your graves and have you rise from them,” and in the Gospel, Jesus raises Lazarus from the dead.
Back then, people were buried faster than today. They didn’t have embalming, so bodies would start to rot sooner. I think Jesus waited to go to Lazarus because he wanted to prove that raising Lazarus from the dead wasn’t just a trick. By the time Jesus arrived in Judea, Lazarus had been in the tomb for four days. Even Lazarus’ sister said, “Lord, by now there will be a stench,” so it really was a miracle.
I also think the Gospel foreshadows Jesus’ resurrection, because Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead just like He would rise from the dead at Easter.
The Psalm is saying you can call on God for any of your problems: “Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord.” That also connects to the second reading, because Paul says when we have the Holy Spirit to help us, He gives us new life:
“…if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the spirit is alive because of righteousness. If the Spirit of the one who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, the one who raised Christ from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also, through his Spirit dwelling in you.”
This New Testament reading also connects back to the first reading from Ezekiel when God promises, “I will put my spirit in you that you may live.”
One time that I think I heard the Holy Spirit was when I took my little brother, Andrew, for a walk. Andrew was having a bad day, and I think the Holy Spirit put the idea in my head that a walk might help him feel better — and it did!
Author: Joseph Bader