The Seven Last Words of Jesus Christ: The Fifth Word
The Fifth Word
“I thirst.” (Jn 19:28)
After this, aware that everything was now finished, in order that the scripture might be fulfilled, Jesus said, “I thirst.” There was a vessel filled with common wine. So they put a sponge soaked in wine on a sprig of hyssop and put it up to his mouth.
“All the circumstances in which life places us bring a divine message, asking us to respond with love and service to others. ‘When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate them one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, and he will place the sheep at his right hand, but the goats at the left.
“‘Then the King will say to those at his right hand, Come, O blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me. Then the righteous will answer him, Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you? And the King will answer them, Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’
“We must learn to recognize Christ when he comes out to meet us in our brothers, the people around us. No human life is ever isolated. It is bound up with other lives. No man or woman is a single verse; we all make up one divine poem which God writes with the cooperation of our freedom.”
St. Josemaria Escriva
Christ is Passing By, no. 111
Prayer of Abandonment to God’s Providence
My Lord and my God:
into your hands I abandon the past and the present and the future,
what is small and what is great,
what amounts to a little and what amounts to a lot,
things temporal and things eternal.
Our Father. Hail Mary. Glory Be.
The Seven Last Words is a beloved devotion of the Church that invites us to recall and meditate on Jesus’s last words as he hung on the cross.
In this collection, each word is accompanied by the corresponding Gospel passage and a reflection and prayer from St. Josemaria Escriva. The devotion can be prayed over a week—each day devoted to one of the seven words— or it may be prayed in a single day.
Holy Week, especially Good Friday, is an ideal time to make use of this devotion for personal prayer: to silently and prayerfully contemplate Jesus’s passion and death, to be united to him in his suffering, and to dwell on the strength and mercy of his love.
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