Gospel: John 15:26-16:4a
Jesus said to his disciples:
“Now I am going to the one who sent me,
and not one of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’
But because I told you this, grief has filled your hearts.
But I tell you the truth, it is better for you that I go.
For if I do not go, the Advocate will not come to you.
But if I go, I will send him to you.
And when he comes he will convict the world
in regard to sin and righteousness and condemnation:
sin, because they do not believe in me;
righteousness, because I am going to the Father
and you will no longer see me;
condemnation, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
The Mass intention is for Fr Gerry Markey’s Intentions.
In today’s Gospel, Jesus tells His followers: “[I]f I do not go, the Advocate will not come to you.” Jesus was aware of His disciples’ grief when He told Him that He was leaving. However, He assures them of the Holy Spirit dwelling in them when He ascends into heaven. That assurance is extended to us as members of Christ’s Mystical Body, the Church. Frank Sheed, a Catholic author, wrote “The most priceless gift that flows from it (i.e., our membership in the Church) is the Holy Spirit’s dwelling in us as he dwells in Christ, acting on us as on Christ.” Remember how Jesus was driven by the Spirit into the wilderness after He was baptized (Mark 1:12)? This and many other actions of the Spirit have guided Our Lord in establishing the Church. Lest we be confused, Christ’s leaving does not mean we have lost Him. On the contrary, “We have Jesus by having the Spirit dwelling in us as in Him.” (Sheed).
In our First Reading today (Acts 16:22-34), we read how the Spirit’s power was at work: in Paul and Silas while they “were praying and singing God’s praises” while in prison, when the earthquake shook the prison and “All doors flew open and the chains fell from all the prisoners”, and when the jailer and his family were baptised and “celebrated their conversion to belief in God.” We may not have a spectacular experience like that but let us cherish those moments when we ourselves have been empowered by the Spirit. Filled by the Spirit, let us bring Christ’s message to every corner of the world!
- What are those moments when you were empowered by the Spirit?
- How does the Holy Spirit make you a better Christian?
- How can you witness to the Spirit’s presence in you?
Lord Jesus, thank You for Your Word today. Make us docile to the Holy Spirit that like You, we may bring the Good News to the poor. Amen.