May 15, 2022, 5th Sunday of Easter
Dear Parish Family,
Today’s Gospel passage takes place within the setting of the Last Supper. That seems a little strange: backing up to Holy Thursday 28 days after Jesus rose from the dead on Easter Sunday.
If we were to pick one sentence that makes this passage fitting for today, it would be the one in which Jesus says, “My children, I will be with you only a little while longer.” Like so much in Saint John’s account of the Gospel, this sentence has a double meaning. On the one hand, Jesus is referring to His arrest and death, which will happen shortly after the Last Supper. At the same time, Jesus is also referring to His Ascension to the Father’s Right Hand in Heaven, which will happen forty days after His Res- urrection.
The Liturgy is encouraging us to prepare for the end. We need to prepare for the end of the Easter Season. Dur- ing the final ten days of Easter, the Church will celebrate the Ascent of Jesus to Heaven, and the Descent of the Holy Spirit from Heaven. Those final two mysteries of Easter — the Ascension and Pentecost — reveal to us the goal of Jesus’ mission on earth - His Church.
Jesus’ Church is His Mystical Body on earth, the means by which He continues to be present in this world after His Ascension to Heaven. The Church is referred to as “she” because the Church is the Bride of Christ. It’s for her that Jesus sacrificed His whole self on the Cross, so that she might have life, and have it more abundantly. The Church is our Mother, because it’s through her that we have a spiritual life, and continue to receive grace throughout our lives on earth.
Jesus’ Church is the way in which Jesus continues to walk this earth, preach, and serve the spiritual and corporal needs of those without the ability to help themselves. As Saint Teresa of Avila said, “Christ has no body now on earth but yours, no hands but yours, no feet but yours, yours are the eyes through which Christ’s compassion is to look out to the earth, yours are the feet by which He is to go about doing good and yours are the hands by which He is to bless us now.”
In today’s first reading Paul and Barnabas exhort the disciples “to persevere in the faith, saying, ‘It is necessary for us to undergo many hardships to enter the kingdom of God.’” That’s just as true for us, and will be until the hour of our death.
Our Savior is forming us in these last few weeks of Easter. He’s preparing us for the coming of the Holy Spirit, Who is the divine love of the Father and Son for each other. In this love Who is the Holy Spirit, we can grow as disciples of Jesus’s Church. We can grow more dedicated and persevere in living our earthly lives in God’s love: a love that is universal, and a love that seeks what is truly good for the other. (hprweb.com)
Congratulations to our graduates. May you always walk as children of God
God bless you all,
Sister Maria Inviolata, SMDG