Sunday, April 29, 2018


v  We are approaching the Ascension of the Lord, which we will celebrate next Sunday     

v  Two weeks ago Jesus told us that he is the good shepherd, that he knows his own and his own know him

v  Last Sunday Jesus said that he is the vine and we are the branches. With this image he wanted to tell us that the life which we have is his own life.  

v  Today we will hear him telling us in the Gospel that we are slaves no more, but sons and daughters.  

FIRST READING – ACTS 10:25-26. 34-35. 44-48

Ø  Peter has had a estrange dream, by means of which the Lord wanted to make him understand that nothing that God has created is profane or impure or bad.   

Ø  At the same time that he awakens from his sleep, some men sent by Cornelius knock at the door.  They have a message for Peter; Cornelius wants him to come to his home.   

Ø  Peter goes to Cornelius home and there God makes the wonders we will read in this text.    

o   On arriving to the house Cornelius greets and pays homage to him.    

o   Peter tells him to stop because he is also a human being and not a God. 

o   Then Peter speaks to all and says that he realizes that God does not show preferences, he treats all of us equally

o   What an encouraging word, God loves all of us equally; he has created us and loves whatever he has made.  When we read the creation account in Genesis we hear over and over the same refrain … and God saw that everything was good, very good.    

o   Anyone who acts honestly pleases God.   

Ø  Peter is still speaking    

o   When the Holy Spirit comes down on all those present  

o   The Jews, who had been converted and had come with Peter, were astonished to see  that   

o   The gift of the Spirit which they had received, was also poured out on Cornelius household      

o   Because they could hear them speak in tongues  

§  I have many times asked myself what is so important about speaking in tongues  

§  Maybe it can be a way to describe the wonders of the presence of the Holy Spirit.  

§  But it could be also that God, in performing this sign, wanted to let the little community of Cornelius household know that they are part of the larger community of faith born after the resurrection of Jesus. 

§  When the Spirit is poured out on us in the sacraments we do not see anything especial, any external sign, but in the interior of each one of us something great is happening, something that makes us speak new languages, that is to say, makes us  act in new and surprising ways.  .

§  But this does not happen overnight, it needs time to change us and shape us into the image of the only Son of the Father.   

Ø  Peter asks 

o   Can we deny baptism to those on whom the Holy Spirit had been poured out?  

o   The answer is that Peter make  them to be baptized 

o   All the people in the household are baptized   

o   Peter does not baptize them but he asks those who have come with him to do it.   

o   Sometimes I think that here we have an  explanation to the difficulty that some of our Christian brothers have about the baptism of children. Probably in that household there were children too and for what it is written, they were baptized.    

Ø  Peter has just admitted the first gentiles into the community of Jesus’ followers.  

Ø  How much we must be grateful to Peter and to the first followers of Jesus that they were attentive to the signs that Jesus, who was not with them in a visible way, was giving to them, to guide them in the formation of the ecclesial community.     

 RESPONSORIAL  PSALM  Ps  98: 1,2-3,3-4

. (cf. 2b) The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.
 Sing to the LORD a new song,
for he has done wondrous deeds;
His right hand has won victory for him,
his holy arm.
R. The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.
 The LORD has made his salvation known:
in the sight of the nations he has revealed his justice.
He has remembered his kindness and his faithfulness
toward the house of Israel.
R. The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.
 All the ends of the earth have seen
the salvation by our God.
Sing joyfully to the LORD, all you lands;
break into song; sing praise.
R. The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.

v  This psalm has the form of a hymn, an invitation to sing the wonders God has made.   

v  Hymns spring from a deep human need: to say in words the admiration before the divine works: creation or the historical events, the city of God and even before God himself.   (commentary to the psalms taken from the official version  of  the Conference of Bishops from Spain, my translation.)    


Tradition says  that John repeated, over and over again to his disciples, that they had to love one another as the Lord has loved us.

*      In today’s reading John invites us to love one another because whoever loves has been begotten by God.   

*      In our mind this is very clear, if God is love whoever is able to love is because he or she has been begotten by God, and wants to be like him, wants to be faithful to his or her nature. The difficulty comes in practice when our limitations interfere with our behavior.   

*      If all of us, who call ourselves followers of Jesus, all who have been reborn in the baptismal waters, made the commitment to live as the Lord has commanded us,  took the resolution  to be faithful to our nature of children of God, what a different world we would have!

*      John continues saying that the love of God has been revealed to us in that he has sent his Son   that the world could have life in him.    

*      This is what love is, not that we have loved God first, but that he has loved us first.  

*      I think that even if we meditate over and over again on this truth, we will never grasp it completely.  

GOSPEL  Jn 15: 9-17

·        This reading is taken from the words of Jesus after the Last Supper.  

·        Jesus asks us to remain in his love, as he remains in his Father’s love.   

·        His joy will remain in us, and thus our joy will be complete.  

·        His commandment is this: that we love one another as he has loved us.   

·        Such is his love that he has given his life for us, and in turn we are invited to give our life for others.    

·        Each one of us can look at his or her own life, and discover in it how many ways we have had the opportunity to give our life for others.   

·        The opportunities are always present, the invitations from the Lord are always present too, we only have to listen to, stop, make silence inside of us and, then we will be able to listen to the invitation: love as I have loved you.   

·        It will help you, if you do  not see it as a burdensome commandment, but if instead  you look at me, how I have lived among you, how I have treated you and then go and do the same.     


I never sought any consolation, either interior or exterior, from any creature; I always kept a profound silence of the graces that Our Lord put in my soul. And I kept this silence even with my confessors, because I did not have as a matter of consultation the Holy Law of the Lord; thus on speaking of the acts I practiced, to fulfill with perfection the Divine Commandments, it always seemed to me vanity or idle words, because I had the duty to fulfilled them;  and on the contrary it would have given me great remorse of conscience to hide the smallest thing that I had omitted due to my neglect or laziness, which, by the mercy of God, I was always very careful to confess with clarity. María Antonia París, Foundress.  Memories and Notes 9.  

During the first two years, despite the earthquakes and the cholera epidemic, we managed to visit all the parishes in the archdiocese. In every one of them a mission was led either by myself or my companions, and in rural parishes with a very large territory, several missions were given. Every two or three leagues we would hold a mission in one of the many large tobacco sheds. We would set up an altar, a pulpit, and a confessional with the help of some chairs and gratings we brought along for that purpose. Anthony Mary Claret, Founder of the Claretian Missionary Sisters, Autobiography 538.


CLARET, Anthony Mary. Autobiography.

PARIS, María Antonia. “Memories and Notes” in Writings, with Commentaries by   Juan Manuel Lozano, cmf.

SAGRADA BIBLIA – Official translation of the Episcopal Conference of Spain, 2012.

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