Mass Readings: April 28

First: Acts 3:11-26
Resp: Psalm 8:2,5-9
Gospel: Luke 24:35-48

THE GRATEFUL DEAD?

"You disowned the Holy and Just One and preferred instead to be granted the release of a murderer." –Acts 3:14

Satan deals death and introduced death into the human race (Catechism, 407). You'd think getting humans to accept death would be a hard sell for Satan, but it's actually easy for him. All he must do is divert people's attention away from Jesus, Who is the "Author of Life" (Acts 3:15) and, in fact, is Life (Jn 11:25; 14:6). With their eyes no longer fixed on Jesus, Satan then gets people to focus on the pleasures of the flesh, and the concern of the flesh is death (see Rm 8:6, RNAB). Therefore, once Satan leads people away from Life, they will invite death, consider it a friend, pine for death, and even make a covenant with it (Wis 1:16; Is 28:15). That's the progression Satan uses to convince people to disown Jesus and prefer a killer (Acts 3:14).

In America, especially, we have such a focus on death that Pope John Paul II coined the phrase "culture of death" for our secular society. He even warned that America could be in danger of losing its soul. This culture of death promotes a tolerance toward death. Some modern music and rock groups glorify death; for example, there are rock bands named The Grateful Dead, Megadeth, etc. There even exists a genre of rock music called Death Metal. Euthanasia, suicide, and abortion sell. A popular movie climaxes with the heroine's assisted suicide. In America, Halloween (Eve of All Hallows) has eroded into a day which romanticizes death. There is even further evidence of a tolerant, even friendly, attitude toward death. God has set a choice before you: life and death. Choose life (Dt 30:19). Choose Jesus, the Life (Jn 11:25; 14:6).

PRAYER: Jesus, help me to be "pro-life" in its fullest meaning. Teach me to regard death as an enemy (1 Cor 15:26), not a friend.
PROMISE: "He opened their minds to the understanding of the Scriptures." –Lk 24:45
PRAISE: Jesus lives! Jesus is Life! Alleluia!