The Examen with Father James Martin, S.J.: The Fifth Week of Lent



Subscribe to “The Examen” for free on Apple Podcasts
Subscribe to “The Examen” for free on Google Play

A few weeks ago, I made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, with a group of 100 pilgrims. I’ve been there several times now, which has been a real surprise, since I never thought I would ever go. While we were there, it was announced that the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, which houses the place where Jesus was crucified and rose from the dead, was going to be closed, for a number of political reasons. Needless to say, our pilgrims were crushed. So we had to talk about disappointment, an inevitable part of life.

Lent is a good time to think about disappointment, since the season leads up to not only Easter Sunday, but Good Friday. On Good Friday, Jesus was, to say the least, disappointed. Disappointed in his disciples’ abandoning of him. Disappointed that his message wasn’t heard: remember, he weeps over Jerusalem. And perhaps disappointed that crucifixion was his Father’s will. In the end, the church opened in time for us to visit, but the lesson was still a good one. Jesus understands you when you are disappointed. And I hope that this can help you feel close to him, and more able to share your own disappointments.

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.
Deborah Henry
10 months ago

Jesus understands our disappointments and sees beyond our temporary circumstances; even fulfilling a desire for 'crushed pilgrims' to visit a tourist site. Our petty disappointments cannot even begin to compare with the crucifixion of Jesus. He was crushed beyond our comprehension.


The latest from america

In 1983, Sri Lanka descended into a bitter and prolonged ethnic conflict. Harry Miller, S.J., then almost 60, was thrust into a new role as witness, advocate, intermediary and protector not only for his students but for anyone in Batticaloa who sought his help.
Jeannine GuthrieJanuary 17, 2019
I have found that praying 15 minutes every day is an important form of self-care.
Michael R. Lovell January 16, 2019
Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl, Washington's retired archbishop, apologized Jan. 15 for what he called a "lapse of memory," clarifying that he knew of at least one abuse allegation against former U.S. Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick, but he had "forgotten" about it.
Pope Francis meets with the leadership of the Chilean bishops' conference at the Vatican on Jan. 14 to talk about the sex abuse crisis affecting the church in Chile. (CNS photo/Vatican Media)
The pope wants the February summit “to be an assembly of pastors, not an academic conference—a meeting characterized by prayer and discernment, a catechetical and working gathering.”
Gerard O’ConnellJanuary 16, 2019