Wednesday, April 18, 2018

April 18 - 3rd Week of Easter - Wednesday

­­+ We have two very exciting readings at mass today: the murder by stoning of Stephen, the Deacon, is what sparked the first great persecution of the newborn Church. It is interesting to note that “everyone except the apostles fled Jerusalem, and that is because most of them were not baptized yet with water as Jesus instructed, and that were not baptized in the Holy Spirit, which Jesus also instructed them to do. Being untooled and unequipped for spiritual warfare – they naturally fled.

But the apostles stayed because they were twice baptized and being filled to overflowing with the Holy Spirit – they became LOVE, they became the LOVE WHICH IS CHRIST, they became LOVE which will conquer the world – beginning with this persecution.

Saul was one who concurred with the stoning of Stephen, Saul was one who, in his overzealous defense of the Jewish religion, was among the chief persecutors: the went into their homes and dragged out professed Christians and imprisoned them. Yet, it is this same Saul that will be later chosen by Christ because of his very overpowering zealousness to announce the Good News of Salvation through the Risen Christ – to everyone who was not a Jew. This is pretty astounding when you stop to think about it, because the scope of that conversion is still felt to this day – to this mass – to you who are listening to this homily.

It is the vocation of all the world, led by Christian proclamation and witness and service to “CRY OUT WITH JOY TO GOD!” to SING TO THE GLORY OF HIS NAME, to RENDER HIM GLORIOUS PRAISE, to say to God; “HOW TREMENDOUS YOUR DEEDS! Thank you! THANK you! THANK YOU! dear tender, loving, immense and magnificent God of our Salvation and Architect of the new heavens and the new earth that are fast approaching their GRAND OPENING DATE!

The exciting part about the Gospel passage is that when Jesus makes himself and proclaims himself and gives himself as the Bread of His Own Life and Destiny for us to eat – in a Sacramental but very real way – we ingest into our own cells, neurons and blood, his very Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity – his very LIFE, LOVE, AND SELF-SACRIFICIAL NATURE.

In the silence after communion, then, we are meant to ponder, revel and rejoice in the fact that at this very moment: JESUS THE LORD, THE KING, THE SAVIOR, MY FRIEND, MY LOVER is literally becoming me, so that I can allow him to work through me for the good, healing and salvation of others he places in my path today!

Wow! who would not want to participate in this astounding meal, who would not want to “commun-icate” thusly with the Lord of the Universe, who would not want to make the burden of their daily life, easy and light?

“Yes, my friends, come and see the goodness and great works of the Lord.” Alleluia! Amen!

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