Homily for the seventh Sunday of Easter - Year A - Jn. 17:1-11
 
 
by
 
Canon Dr. Daniel Meynen
 
 
 
" When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven and said, «Father, the hour has come; glorify thy Son that the Son may glorify thee, since thou hast given him power over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom thou hast given him. And this is eternal life, that they know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent. I glorified thee on earth, having accomplished the work which thou gavest me to do; and now, Father, glorify thou me in thy own presence with the glory which I had with thee before the world was made.
 
" «I have manifested thy name to the men whom thou gavest me out of the world; thine they were, and thou gavest them to me, and they have kept thy word. Now they know that everything that thou hast given me is from thee; for I have given them the words which thou gavest me, and they have received them and know in truth that I came from thee; and they have believed that thou didst send me.
 
" «I am praying for them; I am not praying for the world but for those whom thou hast given me, for they are thine; all mine are thine, and thine are mine, and I am glorified in them. And now I am no more in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to thee.» "
 
 
 
Homily:
 
 
" When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven and said, «Father, the hour has come.» "
 
The homily for this seventh Sunday of Easter is comprised of the first part of the seventeenth chapter of the gospel of Saint John. It is one of the most beautiful passages of the gospel: that of Jesus' prayer to his Father on the eve of his Passion! Jesus, through his prayer, lifts up his spirit, lifts up all of his soul to God his Father, who is in Heaven: even before the day of the Ascension, even before his departure from the earth on the Cross of Calvary, Jesus is in Heaven, in the bosom of the Father!
 
" «Glorify thy Son that the Son may glorify thee, since thou hast given him power over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom thou hast given him. And this is eternal life, that they know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent. I glorified thee on earth, having accomplished the work which thou gavest me to do; and now, Father, glorify thou me in thy own presence with the glory which I had with thee before the world was made.» "
 
When Jesus prays to his Father, when he joins his Father in spirit, it is always the Holy Spirit, that divine Person who proceeds from the Father and the Son, who manifests and reveals himself, by himself, without being expressly mentioned: the Holy Spirit gushes forth, he almost explodes from the Word, from every word the Son pronounces before the Father! It is in this way that Jesus speaks to his Father of eternal Life, that life of knowledge, which is the gift proper to the Holy Spirit: He is "the Lord, the giver of life." (Credo) "No one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God." (1 Cor. 2:11)
 
During his life on earth, Jesus never stopped speaking of his Father: Jesus accomplished the work that the Father had entrusted to him, which was to make him known, to reveal him, in the Spirit common to them both. "I glorified thee on earth, having accomplished the work which thou gavest me to do." For Jesus, to glorify the Father is to make him known! When Jesus founds his Church, when Jesus accomplishes the act that will permit his work to last on earth until the end of time, he begins by making known the Father's action in his disciple Simon: "For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven." (Mt. 16:17)
 
" «I have manifested thy name to the men whom thou gavest me out of the world; thine they were, and thou gavest them to me, and they have kept thy word. Now they know that everything that thou hast given me is from thee; for I have given them the words which thou gavest me, and they have received them and know in truth that I came from thee; and they have believed that thou didst send me.» "
 
The glorification of the Father by the Son, and the glorification of the Son by the Father - in short, the glorification of the Father and the Son through a reciprocal manifestation - is not accomplished solely in the Holy Spirit, who is the divine Person common to the Father and the Son. But this glorification, of both the Father and the Son, has a certain extension, and as it were a participation, in the life of faith of all those whom the Father ceaselessly gives to his Son. All the faithful who comprise the Church, the living Church, glorify through themselves the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit! It is truly "through the Church" (Eph. 3:10) that the glory and wisdom of God manifests itself to the entire world!
 
" «I am praying for them; I am not praying for the world but for those whom thou hast given me, for they are thine; all mine are thine, and thine are mine, and I am glorified in them. And now I am no more in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to thee.» "
 
All the elect of God are immersed in the Love of the Father and the Son, and they glorify both the Father and the Son! This is what the Most Blessed Virgin Mary, the model of all believers, did ever since the Incarnation of the Word within Her, desiring the glory of God from the very first instant of her Immaculate Conception! May the Mother of God teach us to live this way, always, for the Glory of God and the Salvation of the world!
 

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