Posted by: livingscripture | May 20, 2017

Fifth Saturday of Eastertide

 

FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD

May 20, 2017

FIFTH SATURDAY OF EASTERTIDE

 

WORD of the DAY

 If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours.   (John 15 : 20)

How shall I live this Word?

Jesus warns His disciples that they will be persecuted as He was.  Persecution seems to be almost a characteristic of the Church and of every Christian. Those who accept the message of Jesus are marginalized, derided, sometimes even killed.  This is the way of the Cross perpetuated in history.  If Jesus was persecuted, His disciples will be as well.  He is the ‘martyr’ par excellence and His disciples continue this witness that can come to the point of shedding blood.  These times have seen the increase of martyrs who in so many countries of the world face difficulties and suffering to witness to their faith.  ‘The blood of the martyrs is the seed of new Christians’, Tertullian said toward the end of the second century after Christ.

Even without being killed, many Christians today who want to live the Gospel message with coherence, are marginalized and discriminated against by others and are often impeded in many ways.  The enemies of Christians do not want the message of salvation brought by Christ to be spread in the world.  This is why they want to eliminate all those who accomplish concretely and in every circumstance, the Lord’s message of love.

Lord, grant that I may be a true witness of Your Gospel in the world, whatever the cost and in every circumstance.

The Voice of Diogenes, Writings of the First Christians

 Christians love everyone and they are persecuted by everyone.  They are unknown and are condemned; they are given death, and they receive life…ill-treated in food and drink, the soul is refined; even though maltreated, Christians multiply every day more and more.  God has put them in such a place that it is not licit for them to abandon it.

 

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