Sixth Sunday of Easter
May 26, 2019 – Year C
Readings: Acts 15:1-2, 22-29 / Ps 67 / Rev 21:10-14, 22-23 / Jn 14:23-29
by Rev. Salvador Añonuevo, Pastor
Jimmy Carter, in his book, Sources of Strength, tells about interviewing Eloy Cruz, an admirable Cuban pastor who had tremendous rapport with poor immigrants from Puerto Rico. When President Carter asked him the secret of his success, Pastor Cruz replied, “Señor Jimmy, we need to have only two loves for our lives: love for God and love for the person who happens to be in front of us at the time.”
As we know, this statement fulfills what the Gospel describes as the greatest commandment. In today’s gospel, which is taken from Chapter 14 of the Gospel of John, the Lord Jesus says to His disciples, “Whoever loves me will keep my word.” He also describes the benefit of keeping His word. If we follow His commands, He gives us an assurance that He and the Heavenly Father will come to us and make their dwelling with us.
Many people today live alone, or, even if they live with their families, they sometimes isolate themselves and stay in their own little world. We don’t need a psychologist to tell us that this is a formula for loneliness and misery. It is a basic human need to love, be loved, and relate with others.
The good news is that, as God’s children, we are never alone. The Lord God is not only with us, but He is within us, and He will continue to dwell in our souls unless we drive him away by disobeying His commandments. But if we continue to pray, receive the sacraments, show our love to our God by loving the people around us, the rest of the scriptures and creation, then God’s life in each and every one of us will be strengthened.
When I visit parishioners and friends in nursing homes, rehabs, or hospitals, it always gives me joy if I see them in the company of their loved ones. They may be in pain, they may be unable to go out and visit places they want to see, and they may even feel that their days in this world are coming to an end, but they are not lonely or afraid. Their faith that God loves them and the support of their families and friends vanquishes any trepidation or fear. If because of our human weakness we forget God’s promises, we are so fortunate to have the Holy Spirit to help us. As Jesus said in the Gospel, the Holy Spirit will remind us of everything that He said and promised.