Gospel: (John 20: 19-23) 

On the evening of that first day of the week, when the doors were locked, where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, “Peace be with you.”  When he had said this to them, he showed them his hands and his side.  The disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord.  Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you.  As the Father has sent me, so I send you.”  And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained.” 

Reflection: 

Pentecost brings Jesus’ ministry to a focus: we are sent to continue Jesus’ ministry, armed with the Holy Spirit and specific instructions as to what we are to do: forgive. By his ascending into heaven and sending the Holy Spirit Christ makes his mission our mission. It is a great miracle that God chooses to make us real participants in God’s plan of salvation and sharers in God’s divine life. To forgive doesn’t mean to forget; it means to restore love.  This is the ministry for which the Spirit empowers us, and this is how we can live in peace. (Living Liturgy, p.150) 

Vincentian Meditation:

In his last days, Frederic… “would lie silent for hours with the Bible open by his side. One evening he lay thus, watching the sun sinking into the blue Mediterranean; his wife had drawn her chair a little behind him,…something in the extreme serenity of his countenance prompted her to ask which of all the gifts of God he considered the greatest. He replied without hesitating,… ‘Peace of heart; without this we may possess everything and yet not be happy; with it we can bear the hardest trials and the approach of death.’” (Ramson, Praying with Frederic, p.113)

Discussion:    (Share your thoughts on the readings after a moment of silence) 

When have we come to know the “Peace of heart” that comes from forgiving and being forgiven?

 Closing Prayer: 

We are temples of the Holy Spirit, carrying within us the power of God, so we pray:

-Spirit of God, show us the way.

            When we find it hard to forgive others,

-Spirit of God, show us the way.

            When we search for peace of heart,

-Spirit of God, show us the way.

            When we meet the broken-hearted,

                        -Spirit of God, show us the way.   Amen

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