Catholic Mass Readings and Reflection April 29, 2024


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R/. Not to us, O Lord, but to your name give the glory

V/. Alleluia

R/. Alleluia

V/. The Holy Spirit will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

R/. Alleluia.

At that time: Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.” Judas (not Iscariot) said to him, “Lord, how is it that you will manifest yourself to us, and not to the world?” Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. Whoever does not love me does not keep my words. And the word that you hear is not mine but the Father’s who sent me. “These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

1.      Paul and Barnabas heal a crippled. They make him walk, one who was crippled from birth and never walked. Paul said to him, “Stand upright and walk on your feet”. And he sprang up and began walking. This healing is very symbolic and indicative. To come to faith, to believe in Jesus, and to live as his disciples are like walking in the way, the light of the Lord.

2.      The mission of the apostles was very simple and clear: believe in the Lord and make others believe; walk the way and make others too walk in the same way. In this process, many hurdles come their way. In today’s first reading from the Acts, we find a mention of one such instance. At Iconium, there was an attempt to mistreat and stone them. But, they did not lose heart. They were not frightened. Rather, they seek other possibilities in the cities of Lycaonia.

3.      Their mission was a mix of success and failure, praise and blame, support and persecution. But they always kept up the same spirit of humility. They were ever aware that they were only the channels and instruments of God’s grace. They never tried to steal the show. They never sought to glorify themselves. That is why, when the people, excited at the healing, try to deify them, making them equal to the gods Zeus and Hermes, they resist them and attribute all the glory to the power of God.

4.      Such humility and zeal were possible because of their intense love and passion for God. They loved God, heard His word, spoke His word, and followed the same. They always experienced unfailing communion with God and commitment to Him. This was exactly the same experience and example that Jesus, their master had and showed. He was always united with the Father and the Holy Spirit. This was the same spirit of St Catherine of Siena.

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