Thursday, April 29
Whoever receives the one I send receives Me. (John 13:20)
Sometimes we think of the Church like a relay race: one generation hands the baton to the next by passing on the gospel message. Of course, there is truth to that: we want to guard “the deposit of faith” and keep it free from error for the next generation (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 86).
But sharing our faith involves far more than this. We’re not only passing on information; we are sharing a person, Jesus Himself. That is why, in today’s Gospel, Jesus tells His disciples, “Whoever receives the one I send receives Me” (John 13:20, emphasis added).
We aren’t handing on a “thing.” We aren’t even handing out Jesus’ contact information. We’re giving someone a personal introduction to our amazing friend, Jesus. Pope Benedict XVI emphasized this when he wrote, “Being Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction” (Deus Caritas Est, 1). When we witness to Jesus, it’s as if we are passing on a precious fire in the dark of night, something life changing and necessary to finding our way forward.
What a privilege it is to bring Jesus to another person in a way that could change their life forever! But how can we do this? One way is through humble service. In fact, the Master himself showed us the way. In today’s Gospel, Jesus had just finished washing His followers’ feet when He told them to follow His example. He wasn’t just teaching them something; He was showing them how to do it. This has been the way of the Church from the beginning: we share the message of Jesus through our words and our love.
If you want to introduce Jesus to the people around you, begin by serving them. Listen as they share their stories. Offer to bring them a meal or drive them to Mass. It might be easier just to hand them a Bible – like a relay baton – and avoid dealing with their “dirty feet.” But there is nothing like the human touch to convey the love of Jesus – through your smile, your voice, or your hands and feet.
“Jesus, help me to share Your love and presence with the people around me.”
Psalm 89:2-3, 21-22, 15, 27
Daily Reflections from “The Word Among Us”
Recorded music remains the property of the Artists/Writers.
No ownership is implied
Just As I Am – Travis Cortell – sung by Choir Masters Association Chennai, India
Up From the Grave He Arose – Voice of Eden (India)
Torah Celebration Songs