Sixth Sunday of Easter Acts 16:9-15; Revelation 21:10, 22-22:5, John 14:23-29 On the threshold of Jesus’ pending departure on the forthcoming Ascension Thursday, the Sixth Sunday of Easter readings are filled with wisdom for us who live in the post-resurrection church.
In the first reading, the early Christian community, confronted with the question of whether to mandate circumcision for Christians, decides to forgo the practice. In one way, this decision signals their long process of separation from Judaism. In another way, their decision illustrates that they are claiming the authority of their Christian discipleship to make decisions required by the signs and needs of their times.
In the Gospel, Jesus assures this same community as well as us today regarding his imminent departure; “ do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.” “I bequeath to you my peace.”
As our Blauvelt congregation faces the new challenges and questions rising from this moment of our history, we are challenged by the scriptures today to claim the authority of our experience as individual women religious, and as a congregation, to make the decisions that will help shape our “enduring and emerging future.”
What are the fears that trouble our hearts?
How ready are we to claim the authority of our experience and faith as we take one step and then another into the unknown of our future?
What former ways of thinking, acting and believing do we need to release in order to make the decisions required by the signs of our times?
Sister Arlene Flaherty, OP