Thursday, May 5, 2016

Thursday of the Sixth Week of Easter

(Acts 18:1-8; John  16:16-20)

In speaking of going and returning in today’s gospel Jesus is referring to his death and resurrection.  His crucifixion will cause his disciples great anguish, but his resurrection will multiply their present joy.  We may, however, see the passage in a different light.

Jesus has hidden himself in the bread and wine of the Eucharist.  We cannot see his human features although we believe he is there.  We await his full revelation at the end of time when we will see him face to face.   Still at times we have a deeper experience of his presence.  Perhaps good friends make us feel that he is with us, or maybe it is a preacher’s insights into the Word of God.  In any case it is as if he has already restored to us the joy of his company.

Such moments are to be cherished and recalled when we feel lonely or bored by poor preaching.  Jesus is always with us, especially in the Eucharist.  However, to experience his presence requires faith that is often enhanced by happy memory.