One Monk of the Order of Saint Benedict

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The Word of God and the Body of God reveal each other -- the homily worships both.

May 08, 2008

For Thursday of the Seventh Week of Easter

John 17:20-26

In his Gospel today, Jesus prays to his Father in the presence of his apostles in the Upper Room of his Eucharist.
We hear Jesus uphold that the oneness of all who believe in him comes THROUGH and even IN the Apostles.
He says:
I pray not only for these
[MY APOSTLES],
but also for those who will believe in me through their word
[THROUGH THE WORD OF MY APOSTLES],
so that they may all be one....
And I have given them the glory you gave me,
so that they may be one,
as we are one,
I IN THEM
AND YOU IN ME.

That is a stumbling block for some persons.
Jesus says he has given his apostles the glory he received from his Father before the foundation of the world.
He says the Father is in him, and he, Jesus, is in his apostles.
He says he is praying for those who will believe in him through the word of his apostles.
He upholds that the oneness of his believers with each other, with himself, and with his Father is to be found in his apostles.
All of that is a stumbling block for many persons.
It is a scandalous stumbling block many times over.
The world would prefer that oneness with God and faith in God were a purely spiritual matter, rather than coming through sinful men.
How can the Apostolic Church be credible when it speaks to the world?
On the tenth morning after the Lord’s Ascension, the public credibility of the apostles flared with the Spirit, and three thousand men joined them in the Church before the day was over.
Any credibility the Church wields comes from the Spirit and from the Church’s prayerful and obedient openness to the Spirit.
Even though the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit come to us, and offer themselves to us, we are free to block their entry, refuse them, defy them, and flee them.
We must learn and dare to say to the Gospel, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.”
Christ and the Spirit came into the world with the prayerful openness and obedience of Mary both in Nazareth and in the Upper Room.
The angel of the Lord told her what could come true for Mary herself in Nazareth and for the Church later in the Upper Room ten mornings after the Lord’s Ascension.
“The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.”
After the Lord’s Ascension, the apostles chose to persevere with Mary in prayer.
They had joined her first at Cana’s wedding banquet, where they saw her faith in her Son’s glory, and they saw her Son yielding to her faith and revealing his glory to them.
The Gospel testifies it was at Cana that the apostles began to believe in the glory of Jesus, the same glory that he prays about in his Gospel today.
“Father.... I have given them the glory you gave me....”
The prayer and obedience that opened welcomingly to God’s glory and Spirit on Pentecost were the same as the prayer, obedience and openness of Mary at Nazareth.
“Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.”
The Church and all of us in it receive power to be credible if we sincerely join the apostles and Mary in offering prayer, obedience, openness, and welcome to the Spirit of God, especially here in the Upper Room of the Eucharist.

UT IN OMNIBUS GLORIFICETUR DEUS
That God Be Glorified in All







1 Comments:

Blogger zowoco said...

I agreed with your concept "Any credibility the Church weilds comes from the Spirit" that same spirit of Jesus who fired up the early saints and led them forth to pentrate these cold isles with the Word of God, the double edged sword that cuts through bone and marrow.

7:40 PM  

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