READINGS for 2009-04-17

Didache | Companion | Sabbath



“It is the Lord!” – John 21:7
The room was dark save for the light of three flickering candles located on the center table. Soulful music filled the air while a group sat in a circle in silent communion with God.
On his own volition, a man stood up to get a candle and approached a girl who was seated. He laid hands upon her and prayed over her in silence, after which he passed the candle to her to give her the chance to offer the blessing to someone else.
On and on it went. The circle of blessings, the circle of love.
Tears coursed down my cheeks. I was among strangers, at a recollection with my new officemates. And yet I never felt so welcomed and so loved.
And their love was real. It came not just from their own hearts and minds but more so as an extension of God’s love for me.
I know this to be true because while I felt numerous hands and the warmth of three candles surrounding me, I had a keen sense that it was Jesus who was embracing me.
When was the last time your presence brought Jesus to life?Cecil Lim
Be Jesus’ lips: speak words of comfort. Be Jesus’ arms: reach out to reveal you care. Be Jesus’ heart: show mercy and love.
Lord, let me be Your heart today.


The biggest problem the Jewish authorities faced was one based on metaphysics — they were trying to suppress the truth and the truth has a way of ultimately asserting itself over and above the petty worries and concerns of a small group of people. This is obviously even more the case when the truth concerns the eternal salvation of all humanity. They were destined to fail just as much as the Gospel was destined to triumph.
Acts 4:1-12
1 After the crippled man had been cured, while Peter and John were still speaking to the people, the priests, the captain of the temple guard, and the Sadducees confronted them, 2 disturbed that they were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection of the dead. 3 They laid hands on them and put them in custody until the next day, since it was already evening. 4 But many of those who heard the word came to believe and the number of men grew to about five thousand. 5 On the next day, their leaders, elders, and scribes were assembled in Jerusalem, 6 with Annas the high priest, Caiaphas, John, Alexander, and all who were of the high-priestly class. 7 They brought them into their presence and questioned them, “By what power or by what name have you done this?” 8 Then Peter, filled with the holy Spirit, answered them, “Leaders of the people and elders: 9 If we are being examined today about a good deed done to a cripple, namely, by what means he was saved, 10 then all of you and all the people of Israel should know that it was in the name of Jesus Christ the Nazorean whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead; in his name this man stands before you healed. 11 He is ‘the stone rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone.’ 12 There is no salvation through anyone else, nor is there any other name under heaven given to the human race by which we are to be saved.”
Psalm 118:1-2 and 4. 22-24. 25-27a
R: The stone rejected by the builders has become the cornerstone.
1 Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good, for his mercy endures forever. 2 Let the house of Israel say, “His mercy endures forever.” 4 Let those who fear the LORD say, “His mercy endures forever.” (R) 22 The stone which the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. 23 By the LORD has this been done; it is wonderful in our eyes. 24 This is the day the LORD has made; let us be glad and rejoice in it. (R) 25 O LORD, grant salvation! O LORD, grant prosperity! 26 Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD; we bless you from the house of the LORD. 27 The LORD is God, and he has given us light. (R)
Quite a few of the resurrection appearances of Jesus have parallels in His life before His passion and death. This would serve to reinforce in the apostles’ minds and hearts the true significance of the resurrection and the continuity of life beyond the grave for which we are all destined. Once convinced of the truth of the resurrection, their challenge was to discover the best ways to impart their knowledge to others.This remains a challenge today — as society changes, so must the means we use to proclaim the Gospel.
John 21:1-14
1 Jesus revealed himself again to his disciples at the Sea of Tiberias. He revealed himself in this way. 2 Together were Simon Peter, Thomas called Didymus, Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, Zebedee’s sons, and two others of his disciples. 3 Simon Peter said to them, “I am going fishing.” They said to him, “We also will come with you.” So they went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing. 4 When it was already dawn, Jesus was standing on the shore; but the disciples did not realize that it was Jesus. 5 Jesus said to them, “Children, have you caught anything to eat?” They answered him, “No.” 6 So he said to them, “Cast the net over the right side of the boat and you will find something.” So they cast it, and were not able to pull it in because of the number of fish. 7 So the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, “It is the Lord.” When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he tucked in his garment, for he was lightly clad, and jumped into the sea. 8 The other disciples came in the boat, for they were not far from shore, only about a hundred yards, dragging the net with the fish. 9 When they climbed out on shore, they saw a charcoal fire with fish on it and bread. 10 Jesus said to them, “Bring some of the fish you just caught.” 11 So Simon Peter went over and dragged the net ashore full of one hundred fifty-three large fish. Even though there were so many, the net was not torn. 12 Jesus said to them, “Come, have breakfast.” And none of the disciples dared to ask him, “Who are you?” because they realized it was the Lord. 13 Jesus came over and took the bread and gave it to them, and in like manner the fish. 14 This was now the third time Jesus was revealed to his disciples after being raised from the dead.
my reflections
think: As society changes, so must the means we use to proclaim the Gospel.

God’s special verse/thought for me today________________

Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________


encounter With the risen lorD
One of the most beautiful spots at the shore of the Sea of Tiberias is where the event of today’s Gospel is remembered. The quiet sound of the waves, the rustling of leaves in the old trees, the coolness of their shades all invite one to meditate. Seven disciples of Jesus had returned to Galilee and went back to their former job: fishing. But what can be more frustrating for a fisherman than not being able to catch anything after a whole night of effort!
Let us reflect on three points. The first is that only one disciple immediately recognized Jesus. It was “the disciple Jesus loved” and who for sure also loved Him. It is love that makes us recognize the Lord wherever and whenever He approaches us, whether in a beggar, in a prisoner, in a person we meet.
The second point is the number of fish: 153. St. Jerome tells that in antiquity it was believed that there were 153 species of fish in the waters on earth. The number, therefore, would be symbolical and indicate that the disciples are sent out to “catch” all humanity for the Lord. In the same way, each of us is sent by Him to share the Good News!
A third point is that Jesus had prepared breakfast for His tired disciples. He knows what we need. He knows when we are tired from work, from our struggles and problems. As Jesus had multiplied loaves and fish when the crowd was hungry after being with Him for three days, so He continues to provide us with what we need. In the Eucharist, He gives Himself to us as spiritual nourishment to strengthen us for our journey in life. He offers rest in His Eucharistic presence in the many Adoration Chapels. He offers us healing in the sacrament of reconciliation when sins have wounded us. He offers guidance in the words of the Bible when we are lost or searching for direction. He is there for us. He cares for us. He loves us. Fr. Rudy Horst, SVD
Reflection Question:
Am I aware that the Lord is present, even when He seems to be absent? Am I aware that especially in moments of frustration He is close to me?
Risen Lord, You are always there for me. Thank You for not leaving me alone in this troubled world. May I only be more aware of Your loving presence and run to You first when I meet failure and disappointment.
St. Stephen Harding, Abbot, pray for us.

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