As we talk about today’s Gospel text, I’d like to offer some “previews of coming attractions”!
Throughout the Easter Season we’ve been holding up great texts from Saint John’s gospel that help us go deeper into the Mystery of the Resurrection of Jesus. Now we come to Chapter 13 at the Last Supper. Jesus washed the disciples’ feet and begins His amazingly beautiful Farewell Discourse from which we will be hearing a full 3 weeks, till right before Pentecost.
It’s a profound illumination of the New Covenant with it’s New Law of Love. Beloved Disciples are invited to enter deeply in the Heart of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Peace, unity and truth. A great message of love that we are to live. It begins by understanding the washing of the feet and it’s about the Holy Eucharist.
But also, I’d like to tell you that today’s a great day for me personally! 70 years ago, three weeks after I was born, I was baptized! I was reborn in Christ. A day to celebrate at least as much as my physical birthday!
I thank God that Kathy and Larry, who gave me birth, very soon brought me to the waters of Baptism to be reborn into the New Covenant. I became one of Christ’s beloved disciples. I was chosen and I have had so many moments when I know He has never let me go, especially when I was the lost sheep!
My mother did not go to my baptism as she was still recovering from my birth. To look at me now you would never believe that I was very big baby. My birth was difficult. My mother lost a lot of blood and needed transfusions to keep her alive! I thank my God and my parents that I was reborn into a home where self-sacrificing love was lived each day. The Covenant of Love was transmitted by both word and action.
Saint Catherine of Siena, whom we remember today, was called in solitude to contemplate the Passion of Christ and so entered into the deep love of God to which Jesus invites us in a mystical marriage. In a complementary way, Christian Marriage and family is a call to an everyday experience of the deep love of God, washing each other’s feet, learning to love in the messiness of daily life and problems. A New Covenant of Love that starts with Baptism.
Do you know the date of your Baptism? I invite you to find out. Then celebrate it!
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About Father Jim Phalan, C.S.C.
Father James Phalan, C.S.C., is a Catholic priest, member of the Congregation of Holy Cross and the National Director of Family Rosary. He served as a missionary for many years travelling the globe to help people come to Jesus through Mary as part of the Family Rosary team. Now he is happy to be serving back at home in the USA!