6th Sunday of Easter (C)

Gospel  (John 14: 23-29)

Jesus said to his disciples:

‘If anyone loves me he will keep my word,
and my Father will love him,
and we shall come to him and make our home with him.
Those who do not love me do not keep my words.
And my word is not my own:
it is the word of the one who sent me.
I have said these things to you while still with you;
but the Advocate, the Holy Spirit,
whom the Father will send in my name,
will teach you everything
and remind you of all I have said to you.
Peace I bequeath to you, my own peace I give you,
a peace the world cannot give,
this is my gift to you.
Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.
You heard me say: I am going away, and shall return.
If you loved me you would have been glad to know that I am going to the Father,
for the Father is greater than I.
I have told you this now before it happens,
so that when it does happen you may believe.’

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Reflection

During Mass, after the Lord’s Prayer, the priest prays the words of Jesus used in today’s Gospel:

Lord Jesus Christ,
who said to your Apostles:
Peace I leave you, my peace I give you;
look not on our sins,
but on the faith of your Church,
and graciously grant her peace and unity
in accordance with your will.
Who live and reign for ever and ever.

Jesus wants us to have his peace within us.  It was his bequest to us before he died on the Cross.  It is his gift to us.

His peace is within us, but we need to become still in ourselves in order to get in touch with his gift.

An exercise:  breathe in slowly to the count of four, and then breathe out slowly to the count of four;  then repeat three or four times.  You could imagine breathing in the Lord’s peace and breathing out any tension, worry or stress that is within you.  Notice the peace that fills you.

Fr Dave

 


5th Sunday of Easter (C)

Gospel  (John 13: 31-33, 34-35)

When Judas had gone Jesus said:

‘Now has the Son of Man been glorified,
and in him God has been glorified.
If God has been glorified in him,
God will in turn glorify him in himself,
and will glorify him very soon.

‘My little children,
I shall not be with you much longer.
I give you a new commandment:
love one another;
just as I have loved you,
you also must love one another.
By this love you have for one another,
everyone will know that you are my disciples.’

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Reflection

The first followers of Jesus were recognised by the love they showed for one another: they were learning to love one another in the same way that Jesus loved them. That is the challenge Jesus has left us — to go and make disciples by loving as he loved. Can you imagine trying to do this on your own? For all its faults, the Church is still called to do what Jesus came to do.

Prayer

Risen Jesus,
may we know the power of your love in our lives
and through your Holy Spirit
may we have the courage to share that love
with a world that is hungry and broken
and so glorify your name.
We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

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LISTENING & DISCERNMENT

Over the next two months, there will be the opportunity for you to contribute to the Synod. You are invited to do this by responding to the following questions:

1) Where in your everyday life do you experience love, truth, goodness, hope, and joy?
2) When you reflect on your life now, and as you look to the future, what causes you concern or worry?
3) What is the purpose of the Catholic Church in the world today?
4) Having reflected on these things, what are the topics you would like to see on the agenda of Synod 2020?

The Parish and Pastoral Area Synod Representatives are now organising meetings in the Parish and across the Pastoral Area to allow parishioners to share their responses to these questions. In our own parish, we will be inviting all the parish groups to meet and share; there will be opportunities after Sunday and weekday Masses; Eucharistic Ministers and SVP Visitors will be invited to seek responses from those they visit; and there will be opportunities for our children, young people and their parents to share in our schools.

But how do we hear from those who no longer come to church or who have given up on their Catholic faith? Perhaps you can help here – gently seeking responses to the questions from family members and friends and noting down their replies so that their input is included as well.

You can also respond to the questions online: www.synod2020.co.uk/resources/survey

 

 

 


4th Sunday of Easter (C)

Gospel  (John 10: 27-30)

Jesus said:

‘The sheep that belong to me listen to my voice;
I know them and they follow me.
I give them eternal life;
they will never be lost
and no one will ever steal them from me.
The Father who gave them to me is greater than anyone,
and no one can steal from the Father.
The Father and I are one.’

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Reflection

Out of all the billions of people who have been, who are and who will be, God knows you by name and cares for you. You can never be lost, because God has made a decision to love you and nothing can change that. Even when life is hard and you are faced with worry and anxiety, God still loves you. You can face the troubles in life because God will never abandon you.

Prayer

Risen Jesus,
may we listen for your voice in the depths of our hearts,
and in listening
may we have the courage to follow you,
knowing that we are safe in your loving care
and have no need to be afraid.
We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

holy-see

New norms for the whole Church against those who abuse or cover up

On Thursday, Pope Francis issued sweeping new laws for the Catholic Church on the investigation of abuse in the Church, mandating reporting for the first time and creating a structure to investigate claims against bishops and instances of cover up. In effect, this marks the development of a global system of accountability for the handling of abuse reports. You can read the full document on the Vatican website under ‘Motu Proprio’ or the official summary here: vos-estis-lux-mundi

 


3rd Sunday of Easter (C)

Gospel  (John 21: 1-19)

Jesus showed himself again to the disciples. It was by the Sea of Tiberias, and it happened like this: Simon Peter, Thomas called the Twin, Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee and two more of his disciples were together. Simon Peter said, ‘I’m going fishing.’ They replied, ‘We’ll come with you.’ They went out and got into the boat but caught nothing that night.

It was light by now and there stood Jesus on the shore, though the disciples did not realise that it was Jesus. Jesus called out, ‘Have you caught anything, friends?’ And when they answered, ‘No’, he said, ‘Throw the net out to starboard and you’ll find something.’ So they dropped the net, and there were so many fish that they could not haul it in. The disciple Jesus loved said to Peter, ‘It is the Lord.’ At these words ‘It is the Lord’, Simon Peter, who had practically nothing on, wrapped his cloak round him and jumped into the water. The other disciples came on in the boat, towing the net and the fish; they were only about a hundred yards from land.

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As soon as they came ashore they saw that there was some bread there, and a charcoal fire with fish cooking on it. Jesus said, ‘Bring some of the fish you have just caught.’ Simon Peter went aboard and dragged the net to the shore, full of big fish, one hundred and fifty-three of them; and in spite of there being so many the net was not broken. Jesus said to them, ‘Come and have breakfast.’ None of the disciples was bold enough to ask, ‘Who are you?’; they knew quite well it was the Lord. Jesus then stepped forward, took the bread and gave it to them, and the same with the fish. This was the third time that Jesus showed himself to the disciples after rising from the dead.

After the meal Jesus said to Simon Peter, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me more than these others do?’ He answered, ‘Yes Lord, you know I love you.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Feed my lambs.’ A second time he said to him, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me?’ He replied, ‘Yes, Lord, you know I love you.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Look after my sheep.’ Then he said to him a third time, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me?’ Peter was upset that he asked him the third time, ‘Do you love me?’ and said, ‘Lord, you know everything; you know I love you.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Feed my sheep.

‘I tell you most solemnly,
when you were young
you put on your own belt
and walked where you liked;
but when you grow old
you will stretch out your hands,
and somebody else will put a belt round you
and take you where you would rather not go.’

In these words he indicated the kind of death by which Peter would give glory to God. After this he said, ‘Follow me.’

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Meditation

I come to my place of prayer, quieting my mind and spirit. I breathe gently, reminding myself that I am in the presence of my risen Lord. I rest here as long as I am comfortable…

Turning to the Gospel, I read it slowly. It is long but very vivid. Maybe I can imagine the scene. What parts draw my attention? Do I identify with Peter? In what way? Sitting with the disciples, what feelings arise as I contemplate this appearance of Jesus? …

Perhaps I am drawn by Jesus’s gentleness, his thoughtfulness, his humanity. Or, seeing echoes of earlier stories, I may be struck by his non-judgmental acceptance of his doubting disciples. I speak to the Lord of how I feel…

I turn to look at my own life. Can I see the risen Jesus in my work, my neighbours and surroundings? Maybe I shall try to be more aware this week…

I end my prayer with a slow ‘Glory be…’

From ‘Prego’ (c) 2019 St Beuno’s Outreach, Diocese of Wrexham