Wednesday, May 20 ~ Seventh and Last Week in the Season of Easter
Saint Bernardine of Siena
Holy Gospel: John 17:11b-19 Lifting up his eyes to heaven, Jesus prayed, saying: “Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are one. When I was with them I protected them in your name that you gave me, and I guarded them, and none of them was lost except the son of destruction, in order that the Scripture might be fulfilled. But now I am coming to you. I speak this in the world so that they may share my joy completely. I gave them your word, and the world hated them, because they do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world. I do not ask that you take them out of the world but that you keep them from the Evil One. They do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world. Consecrate them in the truth. Your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, so I sent them into the world. And I consecrate myself for them, so that they also may be consecrated in truth.”
Meditation: Jesus prayed that his disciples would be sanctified and consecrated in God’s truth and holiness. The scriptural word for consecration comes from the same Hebrew word which means “holy” or “set apart for God.” This word also means to be “equipped with the qualities of mind and heart and character for such a task or service.” Just as Jesus was called by the Father to serve in holiness and truth, so we, too, are called and equipped for the task of serving God in the world as his ambassadors. God’s truth frees us from ignorance and the deception of sin. It reveals to us God’s goodness, love, and wisdom. And it gives us a thirst for God’s holiness. The Holy Spirit is the source and giver of all holiness. As we allow the Holy Spirit to work in our lives, he transforms us by his purifying fire and changes us in the likeness of Christ. Is your life consecrated to God?
Prayer: O God, who gave the Priest Saint Bernardine of Siena a great love for the holy Name of Jesus, grant through his merits and prayers, that we may ever be set aflame with the spirit of your love. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Contemplation: Have you ever given time, thought and prayer to know what your purpose and mission in life is? Jesus’ aim and mission was to glorify his heavenly Father. All he said and did gave glory to his Father. On the eve of his sacrifice and in the presence of his disciples, Jesus made his high priestly prayer: “Holy Father, keep them in your name that they may be one as we are one”. Jesus prayed for the unity of his disciples and for all who would believe in him. Jesus’ prayer for his people is that we be united with God the Father in his Son and through his Holy Spirit and be joined together, in unity with all who are members of Christ’s body. Jesus saw glory in the cross rather than shame. Obedience to his Father’s will was his glory. Jesus kept his Father’s word even when tempted to forgo the cross. His strength was not in himself but in his Father who kept him. We, too, must take up our cross and follow the Lord Jesus wherever and whenever he may call us.