Reflections

Ss Philip and James the Lesser, Apostles, Monday, May 3, 2021

JESUS IS ONE WITH THE FATHER
Introduction
We honour today two apostles: Philip was one of the first disciples to be called by Jesus. James the Lesser, brother of the apostle Jude, succeeded Peter as the head of the Church in Jerusalem and authored one of the epistles. Apostles are people who have to witness to others that the Lord is truly risen. They have to announce it all the world.
To them Jesus is also the way to God, the way to the Father. If they have seen Jesus, they have seen the Father and do know him. We too, in this our present time, have the task of testifying to the risen Lord at least by our Christian living.
 
Opening Prayer
Lord our God,
we praise and thank you on the feast
of your apostles Philip and James.
Through them many have come to know
that Jesus is alive and risen.
May we too be good witnesses
to the risen Jesus
by the way we live his risen life,
even though we are flawed and weak,
that people may find through us
the way to the Father of Jesus our Lord. Amen!
 
1 Reading: 1 Corinthians 15:1-8
I am reminding you, brothers and sisters, of the Gospel I preached to you, which you indeed received and in which you also stand. Through it you are also being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you, unless you believed in vain. For I handed on to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures; that he was buried; that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures; that he appeared to Cephas, then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at once, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. After that he appeared to James, then to all the Apostles. Last of all, as to one born abnormally, he appeared to me.
 
Responsorial Psalm: Ps 19:2-3, 4-5
R. (5) Their message goes out through all the earth. or: Alleluia.
 
The heavens declare the glory of God;
and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.
Day pours out the word to day;
and night to night imparts knowledge. R.
 
Not a word nor a discourse
whose voice is not heard;
Through all the earth their voice resounds,
and to the ends of the world, their message. R.
 
Alleluia: JOHN 14:6B, 9C
Alleluia, alleluia.
I am the way, the truth, and the life, says the Lord;
Philip, whoever has seen me has seen the Father.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
 
Gospel: JOHN 14:6-14
Jesus said to Thomas, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, then you will also know my Father. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” Philip said to him, “Master, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you for so long a time and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on my own. The Father who dwells in me is doing his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else, believe because of the works themselves. Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes in me will do the works that I do, and will do greater ones than these, because I am going to the Father. And whatever you ask in my name, I will do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything of me in my name, I will do it.”
 
Commentary
Philip was the first person to whom Jesus said, “Follow me!” (Jn 1:45). James was “brother of the Lord,” understood to mean cousin.
From today’s reading, four words to dwell on—spoken by Jesus to Philip—four words that are almost like icons, to come back to again and again.
•  “Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.”
•  “I am in the Father and the Father is in me.”
•  “The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own.”
•  “The Father who dwells in me does his works.”
Don’t forget that these words are not only about Jesus; they are about us too.
 
Intercessions
Let us pray to our Father in heaven that Christ, who is our way and truth and life, may still be among us today and that we may become the way to him, we pray:
– For the pope, bishops, priests and all who have a ministry of service in the Church, that the truth may become visible in them because of the way they serve, we pray:
– For public officials, that they may prepare for their people the way to justice, peace and unity, we pray:
– For the hungry and the lonely, for the poor and the little people, that we may restore their dignity and their hope in life, we pray:
 
Prayer over the Gifts
Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
let Jesus your Son give us the living bread
that makes us more like him.
In this way may people around us
recognize that Jesus is alive in us
and follow him on the way to you,
our God and Father for ever. Amen!
 
Prayer after Communion
God our Father,
in his words and actions
and the person he was
Jesus revealed to us your goodness and love.
As Jesus has nourished us with himself,
may we become rich with his life
and show a bit in ourselves
who Jesus is and what his good news means
for each of us and for our community,
that we may show the way
to Jesus and to you,
our living God, for ever and ever. Amen!
 
Blessing
“Those who believe in me will do the same works as I do.” They will show that the Lord is present in them and in what they do and that they are doing the work of the Lord. May you all do so, with the blessing of almighty God, the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen!

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