Liturgical Colour : White
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today as we listened to the words of the Scripture, we are all called to proclaim the Lord and His truth before all the people, following in the footsteps of His Apostles and disciples, all those who have given their lives for the sake of the Lord, those who dedicated themselves to be witnesses of the Lord’s Resurrection, His light and truth among the nations, calling more and more people to turn towards the Lord.
In our first reading today taken from the Acts of the Apostles, we heard how the Apostle St. Paul went to Ephesus and encountered some of the disciples and believers over there. He preached to them and taught them having heard that they had only known and received the revelations and teachings of St. John the Baptist, but not that of the Lord and His fullness of truth. St. Paul ministered to those disciples, and they were baptised, receiving the Holy Spirit Who guided them and strengthened them.
In our Gospel passage today then we heard the disciples speaking to the Lord at the hour near His moments of suffering and death, as He was about to embark on His journey to save His people, when He spoke plainly and clearly, as He prayed over them and revealed even more of what the Lord had intended to do, and at that same occasion, the Lord also predicted how His disciples would be struck and scattered when He was later arrested, and how they would then be gathered back and strengthened once again.
For the Lord has never left us all alone, as He has constantly and continuously always been by our side, encouraging us and helping us, through His faithful servants like St. Paul and many others who have given themselves for the cause of the Lord, for the salvation of all and the liberation of all from the tyranny and bondage of sin. He has always watched over us, and by His sending to us the Holy Spirit, to be our Guide and Advocate, He has shown us His perfect love, His faithfulness to the Covenant that He has established with us through His Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ.
Now, what is the significance of all that we have heard today, brothers and sisters in Christ? All these are reminders for us that as part of the Church of God, all of us have been made the sharers in the Lord’s work of salvation, and in the same Holy Spirit that He has sent to all of His beloved ones, guided and strengthened by the Advocate and Helper, through Whom we have been given many gifts and talents, abilities and opportunities to do whatever we can in our respective capacities, and to proclaim the greater glory of God in everything that we say and do.
We are all called to be genuine witnesses and exemplary Christians in all the things we say and do, in everything we commit in life, by living our lives with faith, obeying the will and the commandments of the Lord, by showing love that is first and foremost directed at the Lord and then by showing that same love towards our fellow brothers and sisters, our fellow men and women. And at this time and age, when there is so much darkness and wickedness in the world, we are all called to be ‘Cooperators of the Truth’ of God’, to be the beacons of God’s most wonderful Light among the nations.
Now, brothers and sisters in Christ, are we willing and able to commit ourselves to the Lord, to what He has called us to do, and to do what we can in each and every moments of our lives, even to the smallest of things so that we may glorify Him and His Name through our own actions, words and deeds? We are all called to bring the same words of truth and encouragement just as St. Paul had strengthened, encouraged and devoted his time to his brothers and sisters, the faithful disciples in the city of Ephesus. His care and love for them, and his genuine faith were all that persuaded the people to turn fully towards God.
Brothers and sisters in Christ, let us all therefore help one another to remain firmly attached to the Lord, and to be firmly and strongly anchored in Him in all things. We should not remain idle anymore or ignorant of our responsibilities and parts to do as Christians from now on. Instead, let us devote as much of our time and effort, our focus and attention to live our lives as good, faithful and loving Christians, loving one another, our fellow brothers and sisters, that all who sees us, hears us and witnesses our actions and deeds, may see the Lord Himself reflected in us and our lives.
May God be with us always, and may He strengthen each and every one of us with the courage and hope, to always remain firm in faith, exemplary in life and deeds, as good Christians and brothers and sisters to our fellow men. Amen.