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Fifth Sunday of Easter

May 9, 2020

Fifth Sunday of Easter

May 10, 2020

Deacon Anthony J. Cincotta

Assistant Director for Retreat Ministry

 

Acts of the Apostles 6:1-7

Psalm 33

First Letter of Saint Peter 2:4-9

John 14:1-12

 

A visiting priest arrived by bus to the city of  Philadelphia in order to preside at a wedding for a family member and, not knowing the city, went to the bus terminal dispatcher and asked, “Excuse me, I’m a Catholic priest and I have to get to the Cathedral Basilica to perform a wedding, which bus should I take?”  Without hesitation the dispatcher gave the priest the appropriate directions.  The priest then said, “Because of your kindness I will direct you on how to get to heaven.”  The dispatcher laughed and said, “Father, thanks anyway, but you don’t even know how to get to the Cathedral Basilica.” 

Sisters and brothers we often place our trust in others and in their abilities to assist us in various ways throughout lives.  It may be as simple as asking for directions, or something more complicated as placing our trust in a medical team to treat a serious illness, or an airline pilot to fly us to a different part of the country. 

In today’s Gospel narrative Jesus said to His disciples, “Do not let your hearts be troubled.  You have faith in God; have faith also in me.”  FAITH in God is TRUST in God!

These words of Jesus are the most consoling, reassuring and trusting in all of Sacred Scripture.  However, for most of us, they appear to be unrealistic.  How can Jesus actually tell us not to be troubled?  We live in a world that is rife with poverty, war, addictive behavior, abortion, violence and now the Coronavirus pandemic.  Lord, our hearts are troubled and we need you right now!

As we heard Phillip ask Jesus to be able to see the Father and Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you all this time, Phillip, and you still do not know me?  To have seen me is to have seen the Father.”  He is asking for Phillip’s trust.

If Jesus was to ask that question of us I believe we would all answer that we do know something of Him but many of us do not know Him very well.  NOW IT’S TIME TO WORRY! If we knew our Lord better we would not focus on problems and difficulties but instead focus on His healing Words.  Did you hear His words today?  “Have I been with you all this time and you still do not know me?”  Where then is our TRUST after more than two thousand years?  Today our Lord might ask us:

  • “Have I been with you all this time at Holy Mass, and in the Sacraments and in the Word of God contained in the Holy Bible and you still do not know me?”
  • “Have I been with you all this time in the faith of your community and when you kneel and pray to me you still do not know me?”
  • Have I been with you all this time and when you look back over your life and you can see that I sent you help when you needed it the most and you still do not know me?”

What then does all of this mean?  The answer is a simple one.  If we had more of Jesus in our lives we would have less fear, less worries and less anxieties.  Of course we would still have issues in our lives.  God has never promised that we would not have turmoil in our lives.  Our Risen Lord had His share of problems; He was sentenced to death as a common criminal, and then scourged and crucified.  But He rose on the third day and will help us rise above our difficulties.  As our second reading from Saint Peter tells us, Jesus is the “living stone, rejected by human beings but chosen and precious in the sight of God.”  To accept Jesus, is to TRUST in Jesus.  To be part of His Church and its mission is the natural response for a person of FAITH, a person of TRUST! 

My friends, this is the choice that we must make in our lives; will we be people of FAITH or will we let this incredible opportunity slip by unnoticed and not TRUST in Jesus?  If we try to live without our Risen Lord, life will not go nearly as well for us as when we have Him as the center of our lives and in the lives of our families and friends.

But what of the priest who was lost in our fair city of Philadelphia?  The bus terminal dispatcher gave him directions in order to find his way to his destination.  Our Lord does the same exact thing for us.  He asks us to BELIEVE in Him, to have FAITH in Him, and to TRUST in Him.  Why?  Because, as He tells His apostles before ascending to His Father, I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.” 

Question of the Day: Do you believe, have faith in, and trust the promises of Jesus for eternal life?

Prayer:  Lord, let your mercy be on us, as we place our trust in You (Psalm 33.)

Please continue to pray for the victims of the Coronavirus and for all who are affected by this unprecedented pandemic.

Prosit  

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