Call to worship
At the Last Super, Jesus told his followers not to ever feel abandoned. He would never leave them as orphans; He would always be with them Through the gift of God’s Spirit. The Spirit dwells in all people, making us holy, gentle, understanding and reverent.
- To the point: In John’s gospel, “world” refers to everything opposed to God. The world sees neither Jesus nor the Spirit of truth; faithful disciples do. The world does not love; faithful disciples do. The world does not have life; faithful disciples do. Faithful disciples see, love, and live because of the Father’s gift of the Spirit dwelling within them. This divine indwelling is God’s very love. We are to be God’s love made visible, that the world may see Jesus, come to the truth, and choose to live in faithful love.
- Connecting the Gospel (John 14: 15-21) to the Second Reading: Peter is writing to a community who welcomed “Christ as Lord in their hearts” and who remained faithful by their good conduct in Christ. These disciples have heeded what Jesus asks in the Gospel: to keep his commandments. Through their faithfulness, the world that conducts itself with evil is “put to shame.”
- Connecting the Gospel to experience: The world’s trappings are attractive. The “Spirit of truth” poured into our hearts by the Father leads us to discern where true satisfaction lies: in Jesus himself and being faithful to love as he has loved us.
Jesus tells the apostles in a very touching way that he will not leave them orphans. They will remember him by the way they live, openly showing their love for others as he did. God’s Spirit will sustain them — the Spirit of Truth.
This is the same Spirit that overshadowed Mary as she conceived Jesus, who appeared at Jesus’ baptism and during his time in the desert, and who was in him during his whole public ministry and throughout his passion and dying.
When Jesus prays that his followers receive this loving Spirit, it means that he profoundly abides with us- because we are invited into the loving relation-ship he shares with his Father and the Spirit.
The Spirit within us calls us to forgive, make peace, and walk in holiness, Today’s second reading instructs us to be channels of understanding and hope, acting gently and reverently toward each other.
(John 14: 15-21)
And I will ask the Father, and he will give you
another Advocate to be with you always.
Jesus, you comfort and transform us through your Spirit.
Please breathe that Spirit again.Our whole planet needs it now.
Instruct our scientists how to find cures for a sick climate
as well as for viruses. Inspire us to learn new ways
to end violence and feed starving children.
Help us listen for the cry of the poor,
the Earth, and the cries of all who suffer.
When we love you in our neighbor,
let us find you in ourselves.
The First Reading
(Acts 8: 5-8, 14-17)
For unclean spirits, crying out in a loud voice,
came out of many possessed people.
Phillip brought your word to the possessed.
Unclean spirits went out of them;
great joy came to Samaria.
Lord, please, show the exit door
to whatever is not love, truth and goodness.
Let it come out of all people.
Let the Holy Spirit, enter at once,
and put signs of yourself within
our lives this very day.
The Second Reading
(1 Peter 3: 15-18)
For Christ also suffered for sins once,
the righteous for the sake of the unrighteous.
How hard it is to suffer.
You, Christ, suffer with us.
Let us swing wide the door
to let in your suffering, whenever it knocks.
Let the Holy Spirit entice us to know you better,
love you more. Let us come to life in the Spirit.
Copyright © 2023, Anne M. Osdieck
Music for reflection