May 15, 2013

The Gospel Today

Wednesday of the Seventh Week of Easter

Jn 17: 11B-19

Lifting up his eyes to heaven, Jesus prayed, saying:
“Holy Father, keep them in your name
that you have given me,
so that they may be one just as we are one.
When I was with them I protected them in your name that you gave me,
and I guarded them, and none of them was lost
except the son of destruction,
in order that the Scripture might be fulfilled.
But now I am coming to you.
I speak this in the world
so that they may share my joy completely.
I gave them your word, and the world hated them,
because they do not belong to the world

any more than I belong to the world.
I do not ask that you take them out of the world
but that you keep them from the Evil One.
They do not belong to the world
any more than I belong to the world.
Consecrate them in the truth.
Your word is truth.
As you sent me into the world,
so I sent them into the world.
And I consecrate myself for them,
so that they also may be consecrated in truth.”

Reflection (Sem. Emmanuel G. Calumpong)

Whenever someone asks me for prayers, I always make it a point that whenever I have the chance to pray, I would include the person’s request in my intentions.  But then, I met a priest who told me that whenever someone asks him for prayers, he would pray right away for the person requesting for prayers and for his or her intentions.  Accordingly, he even does it during a pause or break in their conversations or just as he is leaving the person.  The priest also told me that he also learned this secret from St. Arnold Janssen who said that “it is better that you pray for the person right away lest you forget the person’s request if you do it at another time.” And so from then on I began to practice what this priest had shared to me.  Growing in age now, I surely cannot trust my memory and thus, St. Arnold’s style, if I can call it such, certainly fits me.

Being a seminarian, I have been asked countless of times by people to pray for them and their intentions.  People you know may have asked you the same.  It is a great feeling to know that other people are praying for us aside of course from praying for ourselves.  But could you imagine God himself praying for you?  Well, in today’s gospel, we see that Jesus is asking the Father that we be protected from the evil one.  The very idea of Jesus praying for us is astounding, to say the least.  But it is true and it shows how deep the love of God is, and the compassion of Jesus is for each other.

Incidentally, today is the feast day of San Isidro Labrador. We can ask him to pray that we will defend the truth in all the circumstances of our lives.

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