Apr 092015

By Fr. Andrew Kelly

In John’s Gospel a community becomes beloved by living and radiating Jesus Christ’s risen presence.

In Sunday’s Gospel (John 20:19-31) “…Jesus breathed on the disciples and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit.’”  The community becomes beloved because the community now breathes 24/7 Jesus’ Holy Spirit. Jesus’ Holy Spirit transforms the community into Jesus Christ’s living body filled with the Lord’s own holiness, reconciliation, peace and joy.

This is what the community is to radiate in its every word and deed as it goes on mission in Jesus Christ’s name. This is how the world will come to see, hear and believe in Jesus Christ who is risen from the dead and living in the community’s very heart.

Sadly, the opposite is also true. If the risen Lord’s holiness, reconciliation, peace and joy are not what animate and sustain the community’s life, there is probably no Easter light or alleluias, either.  The community is no longer the Lord’s beloved.

Most sad of all is that the world will never see, hear or believe in and experience Jesus Christ’s holiness, reconciliation, peace and joy.  Tragically, this is exactly what the world is in most immediate need of this Easter season.

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

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