Catholic Contemplative Affiliation

Sunday Readings



Third Sunday in Lent, Cycle B 
March 7,  2021

Readings: Exodus 20:1-17; 1st Corinthians 1:22-25; John 2:13-25

The Essence of the Christian Life: Re-born

Our life in Christ within the Church flows from an interior rebirth of our souls through a real, mysterious share in Christ’s death and resurrection.  It is an interchange between Christ Jesus and ourselves. This interchange is personal.  It flows from the “I-Thou” relationship in grace so that we live the life of the Trinity.  This new life given only through Christ then goes beyond what is commonly called religion; it is spirit and life from a Presence that is beyond all our human capacities of mind and will.

The First Reading: Not Morality, But Life

The First Reading demonstrates that our life in Christ is not moralistic, as would be a religion of prescriptions.  Rather the commandments reflect our nature made in God’s image and our personal relationship with God.  Our morality does not flow from our ethical imperatives discovered as internal, innate propositions.  God within speaks through the commandments echoing what we are and will be according to our wonderful birth in God.  Our ethos is living as God lives in Himself.

That you may have a long life in the land which the Lord God is giving you.

The Second Reading: The New Life Flows from the Mystery of Christ’s Passion

The Second Reading speaks of the wisdom and power of God that is manifest in Christ crucified.  It does not describe religion as such.  The new life given to us is communion in the living power of the personal mystery of Christ into which we are immersed in baptism and we celebrate in Eucharist, infusing the divine life within us.  I know whom I love and by whom I live.  It is the Christ, the Lord Jesus, lifted high on the cross; living now in glory in the Father’s presence, sharing the glory of Son-ship through his human nature because of his death and resurrection and eternally in his divine nature, as the only begotten of the Father.

But to those who are called, Jews and Greeks alike, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.

The Gospel: The New Life in Christ Is as Living in the Temple-Presence

The Gospel manifests the cleansing of external, human-originated religion.  Our temple of worship is the risen Body of Christ.  The Church in all its institutional and spiritual reality is the Body of Christ and we are the in-grafted members.

“Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” …  But he was speaking of the temple that as his body….

“But the hour is coming , and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth, for such the Father seeks to worship him (John 4:23).

“Through him the whole structure is held together and grows into a temple sacred in the Lord; in him you also are being built together into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit”
(Ephesians 2:22).

Our interior contemplative prayer is the consenting, the centering into the depths of the Trinity in the center of our souls, reborn in grace, so we become a mystical temple of mutual indwelling. 

Each Eucharist is the source and summit of this divine sharing  in the life of the Trinity and the promise of the whole humanity redeemed in the fullness of Christ’s victory. We exercise our baptismal priesthood as we offer ourselves with Jesus for the final redemption and transfiguration of the human family and its history.

William Fredrickson, Obl. Secular OSB; D.Min.


For questions, comments or other communication, please contact:
William Frederickson