Chinese Mass：Every Sunday 2:15 p.m
Our Lady of the Assumption RC Church, Assumption Priory, Victoria Park Square, Bethnal Green E2 9PB (map)
Mass is conducted in a mix of Cantonese and Mandarin
After Mass you are welcome to join the community for a tea gathering
[1st Reading – Acts 15:1-2,22-29; Ps.66; 2nd Reading – Rev.21:10-14,22-23; Gospel – Jn.14:23-29]
Jesus’ love and affection for his disciples is so great and evident in today’s gospel that when we read the text we can almost feel this same affection ourselves as Jesus is speaking to his disciples.
At face value, it seems that this gospel speaks about a number of themes. Jesus speaks about ‘love’, about ‘living together in a home’, about ‘keeping his words’, about ‘being sent by the Father’, about the ‘Holy Spirit’ who in turn will teach and remind… Jesus also speaks about the gift of peace that He gives, which is totally different from the peace that is given by the world. The list goes on, but in all these different themes there is a common thread that runs through them all and that is “RELATIONSHIP” and specifically an interactive relationship.
Jesus says that those who love him will keep his word. To keep his word means that they will listen to it and will try to make the best of it i.e. they will not let it pass without them having thought or meditated upon it. It will be kept alive within them. Consequently, this will also arouse the love of the Father for them. The person who keeps the word of the Son – which, in truth, is the word of the Father – will also experience through it, the love of the Father. This, in turn, means that the Father and the Son will make their dwelling and their home within that person. Together with the Father and the Son there will also be the Holy Spirit, who will be ready to speak in the name of that person – i.e. to advocate. This Holy Spirit will continue to teach the Disciples ‘everything’ and remind them the ‘word’ of Jesus and of the Father.
This relationship between those who love Jesus (and keep his word) and the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, will take the disciple (metaphorically) out of this world. In fact Jesus says that the peace he gives is totally different from the peace the world gives! So, today’s Gospel is not just about ‘love’, but also about ‘heavenly peace’ which will be given to those who accept his word! Alongside the promise of the heavenly peace, Jesus is also encouraging those who love him and keep his word to not get disheartened, troubled or afraid. Jesus is inviting them to let themselves go into the Father’s hands. If they love Jesus and keep his word, it should not be difficult to do the same for the Father, because (as Jesus says) the Father is greater than him! Therefore those who believe will create a relationship of faith not only with the Son (whom they love), but also with the Father (who sent both the Son and the Holy Spirit) and they will also create a similar relationship with the Holy Spirit too (who will work in them to keep the ‘word’ alive). In other words a relationship that helps the one who believes to participate in the same relationship that exists between the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
Jesus is also inviting us to love him and to keep his word. If we accept this invitation he will give to us the same possibility to participate in the relationship that exists between the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Are we open enough for his word to love, to believe and let him dwell in us?
“Lord, you promised that you will give us the gift of peace if we love you and keep your word. Help us give this opportunity to the Father to love us and to the Holy Spirit to teach us everything and to remind us how to keep your word alive in us at all times. Thank you Lord!”
Fr. Jesmond Pawley, OFM Conv.
(Permission to reproduce on this site by Fr. Jesmond, St. Patrick’s RC Church, Waterloo http://www.stpatrickwaterloo.org.uk/ )