Gospel according to John Chapter 3 verses 16-18
In this verse we are reassured about how much God loves the world, and what God has done for us. God loves. God acts on our behalf. Of course we need to do our part, but many people today need to be reassured that our God is a God of love. This is the message of today’s gospel.
We can live and dwell in God’s love as we hear in Paul’s Second letter to the Corinthians, which is read for us in today’s Mass. The message is to try to be united and try to live in peace. In doing so, the God of peace will be with us. This reading ends with a beautiful blessing and prayer; accepting the blessing, we receive the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit. Surely, we are well equipped to live a Christian life with confidence and hope. The reference is 2 Corinthians chapter 13 verses 11 – 13.
This reading from Paul connects with the gospel of John where we are reassured that believing in God’s love and the gift of His Son, we will gain eternal life. We live in God’s love both here and in the next life. Eternal life must surely be a very consoling thought for those who are bereaved and for those of us still on our journey in this life.
If we nourish ourselves with these thoughts, develop a relationship with the person of Jesus Christ and His love for us, our lives will be grounded in hope and confidence. Many of the people gathered at our Sunday Eucharist on this day need to hear this message and bring it home with them so that their daily lives are fed with hope.
In case we haven’t really taken in the message! the first reading from the book of Exodus brings it home to us. The words describing God are: tenderness, compassion, slow to anger, rich in kindness and faithfulness. This is our God. This is the kind of person who is watching out for us, on whom we can depend in all the difficult and joyful events of our daily lives. The responsorial psalm (from the book of Daniel) shows us how to pray and respond to the person of Jesus Christ, our Lord and God who is so beautifully presented to us in today’s Mass: For sure we can say, “To you glory and praise for evermore.”
Sr Sylvia Diamond, OP