You may not know that one of the promises clergy & religious make upon entering their vocation is to pray the Liturgy of the Hours (AKA Divine office.) This is a routine of prayers that they pray at various times throughout the day to make sure that they don’t lose sight of their relationship with God within their service to His Church. One of the hours they pray is called the Office of Readings, which includes both a selection from the Bible and something from one of the saints. The following is the reading for Good Friday, taken from the Catecheses by St. John Chrysostom, one of the early Church fathers. I moved it back to the front of the blog in honor of what we celebrate today, because Chrysostom says it all so much better than I ever could. If you’re looking for the readings for the day, click here to get them from the USCCB website.
If we wish to understand the power of Christ’s blood, we should go back to the ancient account of its prefiguration in Egypt. Sacrifice a lamb without blemish, commanded Moses, and sprinkle its blood on your doors. If we were to ask him what he meant, and how the blood of an irrational beast could possibly save men endowed with reason, his answer would be that the saving power lies not in the blood itself but in the fact that it is a sign of the Lord’s blood. In those days, when the destroying angel saw the blood on the doors he did not dare to enter, so much less will the devil approach now when he sees, no tthat figurative blood on the doors, but the true blood on the lips of believers, the doors of the temple of Christ. [Read more…] about Good Friday Reflection: The Power of Christ’s Blood (St. John Chrysostom)