Jesus is anointed with perfume passion Sunday, Teaching from the ‘Soul Institute’

“When he was in Bethany reclining at table in the house of Simon the leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of perfumed oil, costly genuine spikenard. She broke the alabaster jar and poured it on his head.”

Pope Francis said at the Chrism Mass, “We read in the first A good priest can be recognized by the way his people are anointed: this is a clear proof. When our people are anointed with the oil of gladness, it is obvious: for example, when they leave Mass looking as if they have heard good news. Our people like to hear the Gospel preached with “unction”, they like it when the Gospel we preach touches their daily lives, when it runs down like the oil of Aaron to the edges of reality, when it brings light to moments of extreme darkness, to the “outskirts” where people of faith are most exposed to the onslaught of those who want to tear down their faith. People thank us because they feel that we have prayed over the realities of their everyday lives, their troubles, their joys, their burdens and their hopes. And when they feel that the fragrance of the Anointed One, of Christ, has come to them through us, they feel encouraged to entrust to us everything they want to bring before the Lord: “Pray for me, Father, because I have this problem”, “Bless me Father”, “Pray for me” – these words are the sign that the anointing has flowed down to the edges of the robe, for it has turned into a prayer of supplication, the supplication of the People of God. When we have this relationship with God and with his people, and grace passes through us, then we are priests, mediators between God and men. What I want to emphasize is that we need constantly to stir up God’s grace and perceive in every request, even those requests that are inconvenient and at times purely material or downright banal – but only apparently so – the desire of our people to be anointed with fragrant oil, since they know that we have it. To perceive and to sense, even as the Lord sensed the hope-filled anguish of the woman suffering from hemorrhages when she touched the hem of his garment. At that moment, Jesus, surrounded by people on every side, embodies all the beauty of Aaron vested in priestly raiment, with the oil running down upon his robes. It is a hidden beauty, one which shines forth only for those faith-filled eyes of the woman troubled with an issue of blood. But not even the disciples – future priests – see or understand: on the “existential outskirts”, they see only what is on the surface: the crowd pressing in on Jesus from all sides (cf. Lk 8:42). The Lord, on the other hand, feels the power of the divine anointing which runs down to the edge of his cloak.reading, “The Lord said, ‘there-anoint him, for this is he!” Then Samuel, with the horn of oil in hand, anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and from that day on, the Spirit of the Lord rushed upon David.” (Samuel 16:12)

Priests as well as every Christian needs the anointing of the Holy Spirit. Sometimes, When I talk about the importance of the anointing people often brush you off. Priests often say, “Everything I need I received at ordination.” Many Catholics often say, “Why do I need the Baptism of the Holy Spirit? I have received Baptism and confirmation.” St Thomas said, “You can only give what you have.” We need the anointing of the Holy Spirit so that we can give the anointing.

Cantalamessa wrote in his book, ‘Sober Intoxication of the Spirit’ “Now, however, the outpouring is considered by some to be secondary. We have groups in which few have received it and who believe that the outpouring is actually not so important for the charismatic renewal to continue. They keep saying, ‘But we have received baptism, and the Spirit was already given in baptism’ and so on. Jesus was also full of the Spirit at his conception in Mary’s womb, and yet he wanted to receive the baptism in Jordan, and all of the Spirit can on him once again. The reason is that for every new mission and vocation there correspond a new outpouring of the Spirit. Only the first one is sacramental for us, but all the others are renewals of it, of the initial baptismal grace.”


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