Apr 242014

Fr. Andrew Kelly


Every Sunday the Risen Jesus penetrates the solid walls of the community’s worship space, and then penetrates the heart of each believer just as Jesus penetrated the locked doors in Sunday’s Gospel (John 20:19-31). How would anyone know that the Risen Jesus is so radically present and has breathed Jesus’ own Sprit upon the community?

The sign is the atmosphere within the community. If the community is filled with peace, joy, forgiveness and reconciliation among its members, then the world will know for sure that the Risen Jesus has impacted the community’s everyday life.

This is important because of the mission Jesus sends the community on: “As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” The community is now Jesus’ envoy of peace, joy, forgiveness and reconciliation to the world.

But if peace, joy, forgiveness and reconciliation are not very obvious with the community, then its mission becomes a fraud and doomed to failure. If there is no peace, joy, forgiveness and reconciliation within a community, who would want to be part of it?

May the risen Jesus penetrate and transform the community so that the only options become peace, joy, forgiveness and reconciliation among everyone within the community.

(Father Andrew Kelly is a retired priest of the Diocese of Davenport.)

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