April 20, 2103

The Gospel for Today

Saturday of the Third Week of Easter

Jn. 6: 60-69

Many of the disciples of Jesus who were listening said,
“This saying is hard; who can accept it?”
Since Jesus knew that his disciples were murmuring about this,
he said to them, “Does this shock you?
What if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before?
It is the Spirit that gives life, while the flesh is of no avail.
The words I have spoken to you are Spirit and life.
But there are some of you who do not believe.”
Jesus knew from the beginning the ones who would not believe
and the one who would betray him.
And he said, “For this reason I have told you that no one can come to me
unless it is granted him by my Father.”

As a result of this,
many of his disciples returned to their former way of life
and no longer walked with him.
Jesus then said to the Twelve, “Do you also want to leave?”
Simon Peter answered him, “Master, to whom shall we go?
You have the words of eternal life.
We have come to believe
and are convinced that you are the Holy One of God.”

Reflection (Sem. Eric Terrel)

Etienne Gilson once said, “it is not hard to find the truth. What is hard is not to run away from it once you have found it.” Endowed with intellect and freedom, we are oriented towards the truth. We want to know and understand a lot of things that surround us. However, there are things which we can know but cannot accept. We disregard such truth not because our minds cannot grasp it but also because we do not want to live it out. There are some of us who trust our reason more than anything else. Furthermore, many of us do not want to give up our tried and tested ways.

Following the context of the Gospel passage, Jesus Christ reveals to the people that whoever eats his flesh and drinks his blood has eternal life. Nevertheless, many of them, including his disciples, find it hard to believe Him because their minds cannot fully grasp the truth of what Jesus had said. They must have been thinking and asking, “can we really eat this man’s flesh and drink his blood and be assured of living for eternity?” With their confusion and inability to ponder His message, they eventually choose to reject the truth and leave Jesus. They fail to realize that it is more than eating His flesh and drinking His blood. Rather, it is really about becoming more like Him in thoughts, words and deeds as a result of receiving Him. In life, we can strive to know and understand as much as we can. Yet, there are certain things which we cannot fully fathom because we must accept the truth that we are limited and imperfect beings. But as beings created in the image and likeness of God, we are capable of responding to Him by our act of faith. Like St. Peter, we can place our confidence in Jesus, who has the words of eternal life, because He is a loving God who will not deceive. This God, who is the Truth, is actually drawing us to find Him more than we can ever know. Are we ready to accept this?

May the Blessed Mother also called the Woman of the Eucharist bring me closer to her Son Jesus Christ who is the Eucharist Himself. Amen!

 

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