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Sunday Soundbites
Sunday Soundbites is a weekly, 90-second radio homily based on the Sunday readings, written and read by Franciscan Father Greg Friedman. Sunday Soundbites is also heard on Catholic radio stations around the country.

Program for Sunday, March 18, 2012
(Fourth Sunday in Lent)


Sunday Soundbites Archive

I love to read history, or watch a good documentary. But more often than not, I feel sad when it’s over. Hello, I’m Father Greg Friedman, and this is the Sunday Soundbite for the Fourth Sunday of Lent. Not all of human history is sad, but so much of it is the story of human folly and cruelty, of bad choices. War, greed, oppression mark the history of our world.

The Bible has its share of sad stories and today’s first reading is one of them. The account from the Second Book of Chronicles generally tries to stress the positive points of Israel’s history. But here, in describing the infidelity that preceded the tragedy of the exile or “Babylonian Captivity,” the author tells, in stark terms, how the people abandoned their half of the covenant with God.

In theological language, the result is that God declares a sabbath, a time of rest for the land, until the “lost sabbaths,” the neglect of God, has been restored. This history ends on a note of hope, describing how the Persian king, Cyrus, was God’s instrument to restore the people to their homeland.

In Lent we examine our lives in order to restore our part of the baptismal covenant, our relationship with God in Christ. As our other Scriptures for today point out, in Jesus Christ, God brings life from death, light from darkness. That’s the hope of those preparing for Baptism, and the hope of those of us keeping this Lent.

I’m Father Greg Friedman with the Sunday Soundbite for St. Anthony Messenger Press, on the web at FranciscanRadio.org.

Meet Father Greg Friedman
Father Greg Friedman, O.F.M. Franciscan Father Greg Friedman is the former creative director of the Media Productions Team at Franciscan Media, and former host of American Catholic Radio. During his years at St. Anthony Messenger Press/Franciscan Media, Father Greg wrote and directed Assisi Pilgrimage: Walking in Faith with Francis and Clare, which appeared on ABC-TV stations nationwide, and received a 2008 Telly Award for Excellence. He also produced the popular faith-formation series Catholic Update Video, used in parishes around the U.S. For four years he served as pastor of St. Francis Seraph Parish, located in the inner-city neighborhood of "Over-the-Rhine" in Cincinnati, Ohio. Currently, Father Greg is stationed at the Franciscan Monastery of the Holy Land in Washington, D.C.
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