MYSTERIES OF LIGHT
Rev. John Phalen, CSC
The Holy Father, Pope John Paul II, in his Apostolic Letter, Rosarium Virginis Mariae, encourages us to pray the new Mysteries of Light to contemplate the face of Christ with Mary accompanying us. “It is during the years of his public ministry that the mystery of Christ is most evidently a mystery of light: ‘While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.’” (JN 8:12) RVMp9
GOD’S LOVE FOR US
Let us pray that Christ will give us a deeper understanding of God’s love for us through the five Mysteries of Light.
I. THE BAPTISM IN THE JORDAN
“This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” Matthew 3:17
Christ descended into the waters of the Jordan River, the innocent one who became “sin” for our sake (2 Cor. 5:21). The heavens opened wide and the voice of the Father proclaimed him the beloved Son. Our prayer time, too, is an opportunity to rejoice that we are beloved of God, that “God so loved the world that he gave his only Son so that everyone who believes in him (sees his light) might not perish, but might have eternal life.” (JN 3:16) The Spirit descended on him to invest him with his mission.
Loving God, help me to realize that the mission vested in me by virtue of my baptism is based upon your tremendous love for me.
II. CHRIST’S SELF-MANIFESTATION AT THE WEDDING OF CANA
“His mother said to the servers, ‘Do whatever he tells you.’” John 2:5
In the finding of the child, Jesus, in the Temple, he had to be about the work of his Father, while his mother was upset that he could have done such a thing as to go missing. Now at Cana it is the mother of Jesus who prepares the way for his self- manifestation as the Christ. “Do whatever he tells you.” she says confidently to the servers, implying that the hour of his self-manifestation had come.
What love was felt by Son and mother for the bride and groom. This was the first of many signs which revealed Christ’s glory.
Loving God, teach me that there is no need or disappointment I may experience which does not stir you to compassion.
III. THE PROCLAMATION OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD
“But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority to forgive sins on earth, he said to the paralytic, ‘I say to you, rise, pick up your mat, and go home.’” Mark 2:10, 11
What greater sign of God’s loving mercy than the testimony of forgiveness of sins freely given? The people were scandalized that Christ would forgive sins, and yet amazed when he cured a paralytic, having first forgiven him. The forgiveness combined with the healing are signs of the true identity of the merciful Christ (cf. Mark 2:3-13).
Oh God, you are so loving that you grant me forgiveness of my sins through the sacramental reconciliation offered by your Church. What a grace and blessing! May I never be too proud to seek conversion. Help me see in Christ the revelation of your Kingdom of mercy and light.
IV. THE TRANSFIGURATION
“While he was praying his face changed in appearance and his clothing became dazzling white.” Luke 9:29
Those who are close to God in prayer have something different about their appearance. There is an aura about them, much like what is depicted as a luminous halo. The fact is, real deep prayer changes us and makes us more loving, more like the Christ. In this mystery we contemplate the Christ, transfigured and beaming, shining in splendor and holiness. The voice of the Father speaks once again and commands the apostles to listen to His chosen Son.
Loving God, help me to remember those mountain-top experiences of grace and favor in which your presence was so obvious to me. May the luminous memory of them motivate me to listen to your word even when I am uninspired.
V. THE INSTITUTION OF THE EUCHARIST
“He loved his own in the world and he loved them to the end.” John 13:1b
Jesus, at the last supper, gave himself to his apostles as bread and wine transformed, and as service in the washing of their feet. He revealed himself not only as master and teacher, but as the Christ as he encouraged them to imitate him by washing each other’s feet.
Real love manifests itself in service. Help us, oh God to know how to reach out to others and aid them. I am confident that such washing of the feet will help me realize how great is your love for all your sons and daughters. May we imitate Christ in service, for we are the Body of Christ.