May 11, 2013

The Gospel Today

Saturday of the Sixth Week of Easter

Jn 16: 23B – 28B

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Amen, amen, I say to you,
whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you.
Until now you have not asked anything in my name;
ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete.

“I have told you this in figures of speech.
The hour is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures
but I will tell you clearly about the Father.
On that day you will ask in my name,
and I do not tell you that I will ask the Father for you.
For the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me
and have come to believe that I came from God.
I came from the Father and have come into the world.
Now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father.”

Reflection (Sem. Arnel A. Calata, Jr.)

We are still in the Easter season. For us Catholics, there is a tendency not to feel the intensity and joy of an occasion especially in times when the day of celebration is already over. Like for example, our celebration of Easter. It is true that we celebrated the resurrection of the Lord almost six weeks ago. But we should remember that this momentous event neither last for a single day nor for only fifty or more days. The fact that we continuously remember the Lord’s resurrection as the focal point of our Christian life since time immemorial only shows that we are Easter people and we should continue to rejoice for the salvation that was procured for us by our Lord Jesus Christ. It is not just a single event, but, a reality to which we should celebrate as people who were saved until eternity.

In today’s Gospel we hear Jesus reiterating to us the fullness of joy that we will experience in the presence of God. “I came from the Father and have come into the world; again, I am leaving the world and going to the Father” (Jn16:28) summarizes the mystery of the person of Christ. We all know and believe that Jesus is “fully human and fully divine.” As a true human being, He showed us how it is to be truly human – that is to live a fully human life. Now, he enlightens us about our one and only true destiny, and that is to be with God. This experience of being with God is what the Gospel for today points out; the fullness of joy that one can and will experience in the bosom of God’s presence, nothing more, nothing less. All others, as Ignatius of Loyola would say, are helps to attain this full union with God. Thus, we are taught to seek only what is for the greater glory of God – that is to seek Jesus and, as what St. Paul says, be imitators of Him who showed us the image of God. Jesus is truly risen and He will remain alive amidst the continuously changing world. We only have to seek Him constantly and perseveringly in everything that we do and in everyone we encounter.

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