Contemplating the unity of Father and Son... and us
Reflections on the readings for the Seventh Sunday of Easter (May 24, 2020): ACTS 1:12-14; PS 27:1,4,7-8; 1 PT 4:13-16; JN 17:1-11
MISSIO offers “Preaching Mission,” as a homily help, providing connections to mission from the readings of Sundays, Feast Days and Holy Days.
In the Gospel according to John, Jesus offers what has become known as the Priestly Prayer
On this Sunday between the Ascension and Pentecost, the Scriptures call us to prayer and an understanding of what it means to be a faithful disciple of our Lord. In the Gospel according to John, Jesus offers what has become known as the Priestly Prayer at the end of His long discourse at the Last Supper. His time has come to sacrifice Himself for His beloved people. Christ goes from there to the garden where He will pray again before being arrested and commencing His sufferings on the way to Calvary. But first, gathered with the Apostles for the Passover meal, “Jesus raised His eyes to heaven and said, ‘Father, the hour has come. Give glory to Your Son, so that Your Son may glorify You, just as you gave Him authority over all people, so that Your Son may give life to all you gave Him. Now this is eternal life, that they should know You, the only true God, and the one whom You sent, Jesus Christ” (John 17:1-3).
The Son of God was speaking to His Father, plainly indicating their divine intimacy. He talks about glory and authority and eternal life. His closest followers and friends are listening, and probably overawed at the unity that exists between Jesus and the Eternal Father even before the beginning of the world. They hear Christ speak of creation and of the task that the Father had given Him. After all their time together, the Apostles were probably still trying to grasp that Jesus was obeying the Father in order to save them – and all His precious ones – for life everlasting. Almighty God was inviting each of them, and each of us, to enjoy the same bond of love that united the Holy Trinity. It is still an overwhelming reality for His followers today. We are welcome to join with our Savior not only through faith, hope, and love, but also through Baptism, the Eucharist, and the other Sacraments. Let us take the time to read this lovely prayer again to better appreciate the profound generosity of our merciful Lord.