April 20, 2015
Monday, 3rd Week of Easter
1st Reading: Acts 6:8–15
Gospel: Jn 6:22–29
After Jesus has fed the five thousand, his disciples saw him walking on the water. Next day the people who had stayed on the other side realized that only one boat had been there and that Jesus had not entered it with his disciples; rather, the disciples had gone away alone. Bigger boats from Tiberias came near the place where all these people had eaten the bread. When they saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into the boats and went to Capernaum looking for Jesus.
When they found him on the other side of the lake, they asked him, “Master, when did you come here?”
Jesus answered, “Truly, I say to you, you look for me, not because you have seen through the signs, but because you ate bread and were satisfied. Work then, not for perishable food, but for the lasting food which gives eternal life. The Son of Man will give it to you, for he is the one the Father has marked.”
Then the Jews asked him, “What shall we do? What are the works that God wants us to do?” And Jesus answered them, “The work God wants is this: that you believe in the One whom God has sent.”
(Daily Gospel in the Assimilated Life Experience)
Dogs are nice companions because they stick it out with their masters through thick and thin. Human beings on the contrary can be utilitarian, befriending others on beneficial grounds. This is what Jesus bewailed in today’s Gospel reading when people looked for him after they had eaten of the bread which he multiplied in the desert. Jesus called their attention to loftier endeavors. Jesus said: “Work then … for the lasting food which gives eternal life.”
Jesus thus established human beings’ higher calling. Even though we are still in this finite existence, we must unite ourselves with God by uniting with one another. When we love God we cannot but love our neighbor because Jesus said, “Whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers, that you do unto me.” Anyway the mediation is time bound. Be patient! After this lifetime, we shall no longer be seeing God through our neighbors because we shall see Him face to face.
Love of God and neighbor are interdependent. Those who love others on the basis of maximum returns will also love God for self-centered reasons. When they repent, they do so out of “fear for the loss of heaven and the pains of hell”. Obviously the center is still the self and not God who deserves all human love. But those who love others without expecting anything in return also love God purely. When they repent, they do so out of their deep sorrow after having offended God who deserves all human love. These are humble people who feel unworthy, but dare to return to the Father’s house inspired by the fact that even dogs find a cozy place to rest at their master’s feet. – Rev. Fr. Dan Domingo P. delos Angeles, Jr., DM. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: http://www.frdan.org.
Prayer for the day: God our Father, we come to you asking for forgiveness not only because we do not want to go to hell but most of all because we have offended you who deserve all our love. Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
SAINT OF THE DAY: St. Agnes of Montepulciano, Virgin. She was born in 1268 in a Tuscany village in Italy. She entered the convent at Montepulciano, but was later taken to a new convent in Procena. She became its abbess at the age of fifteen. She went back to Montepulciano and founded a congregation which she placed under the guidance of the Dominicans. She was reported to have possessed the gifts of vision, levitation and miracles. She suffered a prolonged illness, but her exemplary life continued to touch many who were led to Christ. She died at the age of forty- nine and was canonized in 1726 by Pope Benedict XIII.