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Reflection Fifth Sunday in Lent; Reflections on John 11: 1-45

Photo: Marie-Claire Dugas

In this Gospel reading we are to see ourselves in Lazarus and his two sisters. Jesus uses this miracle of restoring physical life to show us that, if we truly believe and trust in Him, He will give us eternal Life. Much hope is offered to us in Psalm 23, ' The Lord Our Shepherd'.

Jesus' weeping for Lazarus is not only for His love for him but for each and every one of us when He grieves over our sinfulness. We have come to know Jesus as a very merciful God. His love for us shines through His death on the cross and resurrection from the dead when He conquers death forever. There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for His friends.

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Reflection Fifth Sunday in Lent, 2017

Sister Mary Ann Rossi, CND resides with four CND’s in Norwalk, CT where she is the local leader for the eight CND’s at Lourdes Health Care Center.  For many years she was part of the RI Associate group and now gathers each month at Wilton with Associates from the CT area.  

John’s Gospel’s telling of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead is a favorite of mine for two reasons.  First, Martha is a favorite of mine and it is in THIS Gospel, she proves to be a strong woman of faith in her direct exchange with her friend Jesus at a painful time in her life. It has been always easier for me to identify with Martha rather than her sister Mary. You know Mary, the one who sits at the feet of Jesus while Martha is in the kitchen making a meal for Jesus and his hungry followers!  I think that this is a genetic preference because my mother once confided in me that she was irritated with Jesus in this scene. “Mary Ann, who was going to make dinner if they were BOTH sitting at the feet of Jesus?  Mary reminds me of your Aunt Pauline who would be socializing with the guests in the living room while your father and I were preparing dinner.” 

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The on-going political struggle for recognition of the rights of Anglophone Cameroon as stated in the Constitution of 1961 led to the strike of Anglophone lawyers and teachers.  This strike is now in its fourth month.  Given the strike of the teachers, students on every level, nursery to university have been out of school since mid-December.  Efforts on the part of the Cameroonian government to get parents to send their children back to school have failed given the on-going presence of the military in major cities, arrests, and blocking of access to the internet since January 19th.  In addition, “Ghost town" days are held every Monday when all stores are closed and there is no vehicular traffic in the North and South regions.  Opposition leaders have been arrested and/or gone into exile adding to the difficulty of having meaningful dialogue to resolve the crisis.  The five Bishops of the Northwest and Southwest Regions sent a memorandum to President Paul Biya in December 2016 “… with a view to assisting the government to seek a lasting solution to this problem and enable its citizens to live in peace and harmony.” Please continue to pray for all those affected by this crisis and for wisdom for those who can help to facilitate dialogue.

(Sister Cathy Molloy now lives in the USA. She was a missionary in Cameroon for many years).

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