HOMILY FOR FRIDAY OF 7TH WEEK OF EASTER.
THEME: Lord, you know everything; you know I love you.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Feed my sheep.
BY: Rev Fr Deotacious Chikontwe SMA.
*SAINT OF THE DAY*
Memorial of Saint Philip Neri, Priest.
*READINGS OF THE DAY*
Good morning dear brethrens, today we celebrate Friday of the 7th Week of Easter Period, liturgical calendar Year A. At the same we commemorate the Memorial of Saint Philip Neri, a priest.
*FROM OUR FIRST READING*
In our first reading today, we heard regarding a conversation between Festus, the Governor and Procurator of Judea with King Agrippa, the Herodian ruler of the region, about St. Paul the Apostle, his works and ministry and how the Jewish authorities, members of the Sanhedrin had been accusing him of wrongdoing, and how St. Paul appealed to the Emperor for his case.
*FROM OUR GOSPEL READING*
It was after the risen Lord had eaten breakfast with his disciples that he asked Peter the question, ‘Do you love me more than these others do?’ The risen Lord first entered into communion with his disciples over a meal. In that way, he was demonstrating his love for them even though they had failed him in the hour of his passion and death. The Lord was showing Peter, in particular, that he had not broken his loving communion with him, even after Peter had denied him publicly three times. The Lord’s love of his disciples was not dependent upon their love of him; his faithfulness to them was not conditional upon their faithfulness to him. Having had this experience of the Lord’s faithful love, Peter hears the Lord ask him, ‘Do you love me?’ The Lord’s love for Peter was not in doubt; what needs clarifying is Peter’s love of the Lord. Three times the risen Lord asks this question and three times Peter replies, ‘you know I love you’, thereby overcoming his earlier threefold denial.
Dear friends in Christ, once Peter’s loving commitment to the Lord has been renewed, the Lord can entrust him with the pastoral care of the other disciples, ‘feed my sheep’. His loving relationship with the Lord had first to be renewed before he could reveal the love of the Good Shepherd to others. There is a pattern there that applies to all of our lives. The Lord continues to love us even when we fail him; he continues to draw us into communion with himself, even after we have broken communion with him. He keeps asking us to renew our love of him, in response to his love of us. If we do so, Lord will send us forth to reveal his love to all those we encounter. He calls us to be good shepherds of each other, as he has been a good shepherd to us, laying down his life in love for us.
Your Word is indeed my Strength Oh Lord our God. May You All Have a Blessed Friday.
*Saint Philip Neri, Pray for Us.*
Rev Fr Deotacious Chikontwe SMA.
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