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The Seeds of Our Faith


 

“It was not you who chose me,

but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit

that will remain, so whatever you ask the Father in my name

he may give you. This I command you:  love one another.”


 From Sunday’s Gospel John 15:9-17


When someone is ordained a priest, an ordination card is usually created with a favorite scripture or other religious verse added along with the name and date of the priest’s ordination. When I was ordained almost 23 years ago, I chose the first half of the verse listed above, John 15:15, due to the overwhelming belief that my vocation did not come from within myself, but from, I’m certain, God’s call. Indeed, God loves us before we understand true love and plants the seeds of faith within our souls even before we know what is happening. Our gift of faith is a mystery that originates in God’s grace. As we hear in the last verse from the second reading of I John 4:7-10: “In this is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as expiation for our sins.”


Today’s Gospel and Second Reading remind us that God loved us first and that we are to love God and our neighbor in return. There is no greater love than to lay one’s life down for one’s friends; having just celebrated the Holy Triduum we have a fresh memory of recalling Christ’s passion, death, and resurrection that revealed the depth of Christ’s love for us. In addition, we are not called slaves but elevated to the rank of a friend, so intimate does Jesus want to be united with us. As we continue to celebrate this great Season of Easter, let us demonstrate our love by keeping God’s commandments and being generous in acts of charity to our neighbor.    


 

 

 

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