“Testimony of the Beloved Disciple”

Saturday of the Seventh Week of Easter/ May 30,2020

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Gospel: John 21:20-25

Friends, in today’s Gospel Jesus was talking to Peter about the apostle John. How could John testify to Him, as He wants John to remain, and what could be his responsibility in the future. As we all know that the apostle John was the youngest of all apostles of Christ. Probably, as he was the youngest, he could be the closest apostle to Jesus. And we could testify to that because the scriptures referred to him as the ‘beloved disciple’ (John 21:7, 20) and in the last supper he was described as the apostle beside Jesus (John 13:23). So John was an important witness in the life of Jesus Christ. Surely, his testimony is strong and probably enough for the disciples and those who do not yet know Christ to believe.

How does John testify to Jesus? If we recall episodes on the life of Christ with His beloved, we will discover that John is one of the privileged apostle to witness closely Jesus’ victory over death: In raising Jairus daughter to life, at the Transfiguration Jesus is prefigured to be glorified in his death, and during the crucifixion John was on the foot of the cross. But his testimony to Christ does not end there. John continued his testimony even until this time, for he was the disciple who spoke of the things happened in Israel and wrote them down (He caused them to be written down) and we all know that what John said is true” (John 21:24). This is what Jesus meant about John’ remaining until He comes again. That the Word should be written down, so that it will remain in the hearts of men.

How does this testimony of John lead us? It leads us to the Truth of our Faith. “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched—this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. We write this to make our[a] joy complete.” (1 John 1:1-4)

Prayer: Abba, our Loving Father thank You for Your Son Jesus, who give us life by winning death. May we in His second coming find Joy and Peace in the faith that You’ve gave us. Through our Lord Jesus Christ Your Son, who lives with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, One God, forever and ever. Amen.

Do you love Me more than these..?

Friday of the Seventh Week of Easter/ May 29, 2020

Photo Credit to the Order of the Carmelites

Gospel: John 21:15-19

Friends, after Jesus had revealed himself to His disciples and eaten breakfast with them, He asked Simon Peter three times concerning his love for the Lord. Jesus asked, “Simon, son of John do you love Me more than these? And Peter replied to Him three times also from the bottom of his heart, “Yes Lord, You know that I love You!” Then, Jesus commanded Him to ‘take care,’ of His sheep, to feed and tend them.

Why does Jesus asked him three times, if the Lord knows well Peter, that he loved Him so much? Jesus, asked this question exactly three times because Peter denies Him three times also after He was arrested in the garden of Gethsemane (John 18:17, 25, 27). All of this was to counter-act Peters denial of the Lord. And the question also of Jesus tests Peter’s faith, trust, and loyalty to Him. Jesus wants Peter to be strong and never waiver anymore for he will become a great ‘leader’ of Jesus’ flock. He will be ‘the rock’ which Jesus will found His Church. And he will have a great responsibility, to feed and tend Jesus sheep, & lambs.

As disciples of the Lord Jesus we are also given a ‘responsibility’ to take care’ of our brothers and sisters who need most of our help. Those brothers and sisters who are needy, without home, rejected in the society, the disabled, the crippled, the beggars, those abused by the perpetrators, the smallest in the eyes of the society, and those who are living in the peripheries and far-flung areas. Jesus is also asking us the same questions, ‘My Brother, My Sister, do you love Me more than everything, anything else in the world? Do you really love Me? What would be our response? Would it be the same like Peter?

As Jesus commanded Peter to take care of His sheep, Jesus is also challenging and commanding us to take care of those people whom He entrusted into our care! He is challenging each one of us to ‘tend, and feed His sheep & lambs!’ He wants us to remember that, “when we tend, feed, and taking care of Jesus’ sheep, we are taking care of Jesus Himself, for He said that whatever you do to the least of my brothers and sisters, you do it to Me!”

Prayer: Abba, our Loving Father, thank You for giving us Jesus who feeds us with His own body and blood in the Eucharist. May we who eat His body, and drink of His blood become Jesus towards others, loving without condition. Through our Lord Jesus Christ Your Son, who lives with You in unity with the Holy SPirit, One God forever and ever. Amen.