Friday of the Seventh Week of Easter
(Acts 25:13b-21; John 21:15-19)
Many evangelical Protestants openly profess their love of Jesus. But surely love of the Lord is as much a characteristic of true Catholics. Mother Teresa used to describe herself by saying, “By blood, I am Albanian. By citizenship, an Indian. By faith, I am a Catholic nun. As to my calling, I belong to the world. As to my heart, I belong entirely to the Heart of Jesus.”
In the gospel today Jesus uses love for him as the one criterion for service of his lead apostle. Some will scoff that it is silly to say that we love someone who died two thousand years ago. They also will question what kind of love it is if the beloved, like a baseball star or a pop singer, has millions of professed lovers. But these objections really do not faze us because we know that Jesus is alive and dwells among us spiritually. We can even have a personal relationship with him by caring for his body, the Church, and listening to his words in Scripture. Finally, because he is God, we know that he can care for all his lovers with the utmost personal attention.