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Seventh Sunday of Easter

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 15:9-17.


Jesus said to his disciples: "As the Father loves me, so I also love you. Remain in my love. 
If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father's commandments and remain in his love. 
I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete."
This is my commandment: love one another as I love you. 
No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends.
You are my friends if you do what I command you. 
I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father.
It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you. 
This I command you: love one another."

Commentary of the day 
Benedict XVI, pope from 2005 to 2013 
Homily of the 14th May 2010 (Apostolic journey to Portugal - trans. © Libreria Editrice Vaticana)

Be witnesses!

“One of these men, then […] must become a witness with us to his resurrection” (Acts 1:20-22). These were the words of Peter… My brothers and sisters, you need to become witnesses… to the resurrection of Jesus. In effect, if you do not become his witnesses in your daily lives, who will do so in your place? Christians are, in the Church and with the Church, missionaries of Christ sent into the world. This is the indispensable mission of every ecclesial community: to receive from God the Father and to offer to the world the Risen Christ, so that every situation of weakness and of death may be transformed, through the Holy Spirit, into an opportunity for growth and life. 

We impose nothing, yet we propose ceaselessly, as Peter recommends in one of his Letters: “In your hearts, reverence Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to make a defense to anyone who calls you to account for the hope that is in you” (1 Pet 3:15). And everyone, in the end, asks this of us, even those who seem not to. From personal and communal experience, we know well that it is Jesus whom everyone awaits. In fact, the most profound expectations of the world and the great certainties of the Gospel meet in the ineluctable mission which is ours, for “without God man neither knows which way to go, nor even understands who he is. In the face of the enormous problems surrounding the development of peoples, which almost make us yield to discouragement, we find solace in the sayings of our Lord Jesus Christ, who teaches us: ‘Apart from me you can do nothing’ (Jn 15:5) and who encourages us: ‘I am with you always, to the close of the age’ (Mt 28:20)” (cf.Caritas in Veritate, 78)… 

Yes! We are called to serve the humanity of our own time, trusting in Jesus alone, letting ourselves be enlightened by his word: “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide” (Jn 15:16). How much time we have lost, how must work has been set back, on account of our lack of attention to this point! Everything is to be defined starting with Christ, as far as the origins and effectiveness of mission is concerned: we receive mission always from Christ, who has made known to us what he has heard from his Father, and we are appointed to mission through the Spirit, in the Church. Like the Church herself, which is the work of Christ and his Spirit, it is a question of renewing the face of the earth starting from God, God always and alone !

Take a moment to treasure up all these things and ponder them in your heart (cf Luke 2,19)

Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer everyone. Col 4:6

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