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Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 11.05.2023

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Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 11.05.2023

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ACTS 15: 7 – 21

In those days: After there had been much debate, Peter rose and said to the apostles and the elders, “Brethren, you know that in the early days God made choice among you, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe. And God who knows the heart bore witness to them, giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us; and he made no distinction between us and them, but cleansed their hearts by faith. Now therefore why do you make trial of God by putting a yoke upon the neck of the disciples which neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? But we believe that we shall be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will.” And all the assembly kept silence; and they listened to Barnabas and Paul as they related what signs and wonders God had done through them among the Gentiles. After they finished speaking, James replied, “Brethren, listen to me. Symeon has related how God first visited the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name. And with this the words of the prophets agree, as it is written, ‘After this I will return, and I will rebuild the dwelling of David, which has fallen; I will rebuild its ruins, and I will set it up, that the rest of men may seek the Lord, and all the Gentiles who are called by my name, says the Lord, who has made these things known from of old.’ Therefore my judgement is that we should not trouble those of the Gentiles who turn to God, but should write to them to abstain from the pollutions of idols and from unchastity and from what is strangled and from blood. For from early generations Moses has had in every city those who preach him, for he is read every Sabbath in the synagogues.”

The Word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM  
Psalm 96: 1 – 2a, 2b – 3, 10 (R.) 3

R/. Tell among all the peoples the wonders of the Lord.
Or: 
Alleluia.

O sing a new song to the Lord;
sing to the Lord, all the earth.
O sing to the Lord; bless his name. R/.

Proclaim his salvation day by day.
Tell among the nations his glory,
and his wonders among all the peoples. R/.

Say to the nations, “The Lord is king.”
The world he made firm in its place;
he will judge the peoples in fairness. R/.

ALLELUIA 
John 10: 27

Alleluia.
My sheep hear my voice, says the Lord; and I know them, and they follow me.
Alleluia.

GOSPEL
“Abide in my love, that your joy may be full.”
JOHN 15: 9 – 11

At that time: Jesus said to his disciples, “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you; abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.”

The Gospel of the Lord.
GOSPEL Reflection: The Good Fruit of Obedience
May 11, 2023

“If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.” (John 15:10)

When Jesus spoke the line above, He followed it by saying, “I have told you this so that my joy might be in you and your joy might be complete.” These two lines, taken side by side, provide a helpful unity of Jesus’ teaching regarding holy obedience to Him.

First, Jesus speaks of the necessity of keeping His commandments. To some, such a statement, when taken by itself, can seem burdensome, dictatorial, oppressive and confining. But is it? The answer is found clearly as we read on.

The next thing Jesus teaches is that the effect of keeping His commandments is that we “remain in His love.” He further explains that He is not asking us to do anything that He Himself was not willing to do. He was obedient to the will of the Father, keeping the commandments of the Father to perfection. Therefore, we should hear His command as a dictate flowing from His own freely lived choice to be obedient. As the Incarnate Son of God, He perfectly obeyed the Father in His human nature. The result was that He remained perfectly filled with the love of the Father. But that’s not all. Joy is also experienced in a “complete” way when we imitate Jesus’ perfect obedience.

In light of the teaching from our Lord, how do you view holy obedience to the will of God? Take, for example, each of the Ten Commandments. Do you struggle with unwavering obedience to them? Do you experience them as oppressive and imposed limitations rather than what they truly are? When understood correctly, the Ten Commandments, and every other dictate of the will of God, are exactly what we need and, even more so, exactly what we deeply desire in life. We want interior order rather than chaos. We want integrity rather than fragility. We want joy rather than sadness. And we want unity with the love of God rather than the loss of God. The path to the life we so deeply desire is obedience to the commands of the will of God in all things.

Reflect, today, upon your immediate interior reaction to holy obedience. If you do find yourself resistant in any way to this teaching of Jesus, then that is a good sign that you need this teaching more than you may know. Try to look at obedience in the light of truth. Try to see that, deep down, your soul yearns for obedience and the interior order it brings. Examine, especially, any areas of obedience you struggle with and firmly recommit yourself to unwavering obedience to each and every command of our Lord.

PRAYER:
My obedient Lord, You obeyed the will of Your Father in Heaven to perfection. Through this obedience, You not only experienced the full love and joy of the Father in Your human nature, You also set for us a perfect example and model for holiness. Help me to see the areas of my life in which I need to be more obedient, so that I, too, will share in Your holy life and that of the Father’s. Jesus, I trust in You.

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