- The Abbey of the Genesee - https://www.geneseeabbey.org -

May 12, 2018

Fr. Jerome Machar, OCSO

6th Saturday of Easter
Acts 18:23-28; John 16:23b-28

Today’s reading from the Acts of the Apostles is a reminder that all of us who are either preach or teach need to explain the mysteries of the faith accurately. Apollos is initially presented as proclaiming an incomplete version of the gospel message. We are told that he was a lively, effective preacher, who was full of zeal for the glory of God and the spread of the Kingdom. Seeing his zeal for the Word, Priscilla and Aquila approached him in love and respect. They filled in what he was lacking and helped him become even more effective in his preaching mission. The gospel is a precious treasure entrusted to our stewardship that must be set before the world in all its mystery and beauty so as to nourish the people.

God Who raised Christ from the dead is a God of majesty and power. Because he loves us, He calls us to himself. Through the mystery of the Incarnation, Christ made himself a tangible expression of the Father’s love for us, seeking us out even before we were aware that we were lost. He became our light as we journeyed through the valley of darkness and death. The journey of faith is prompted by his inspiration, furthered by his constant help and completed by him.

The sovereignty of God is manifested in the self-emptying of Christ, who became poor to make us rich in grace. In imitation of the Beloved Son, we must empty ourselves so as to become vessels of God’s love for others. It might be good for us to ponder these words taken from the gospel of Saint Matthew: “I assure you that unless you change and become like little children, you will never be admitted into the kingdom of heaven” (Mat. 18:3).

What are children like? They tend to hold their Father’s hand as they go through life. They are always hungry and keep begging for their daily bread. They are inquisitive and keep asking question after question. They constantly compete for their Father’s attention and affection. As we journey towards our heavenly homeland, we need to be child-like: playful, teachable, and totally dependent on our heavenly Father’s will. We need to study the ways of Truth. Like Apollos we need to be renewed in mind and spirit so as to accurately proclaim the Good News of the Kingdom, only then will the Church grow into the People of God, and become the dwelling place of the Spirit.

Jesus told the disciples to take their needs and petitions to the Father. Having been grafted to the Lord by divine election, we are instructed to present ourselves in our all our neediness to the Father in the name of the Son. In the Beloved Son, we have become sons of God and come to know the love of the Father for each of us. Through His cross, Christ has reconciled the world to himself and has drawn us into the communion of the Trinity. In memory of the Lord’s Paschal mystery we are to carry Christ’s death within us and walk with Him in the newness of life. To Him be glory and praise and honor together with the Father and the Holy Spirit both now and forever. Amen.