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Master·evangeli.net

Today's Gospel + short theological explanation

Friday of the Seventh Week of Easter

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Gospel text (Jn 21,15-19): After Jesus had revealed himself to his disciples and eaten breakfast with them, he said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” Simon Peter answered him, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my lambs.” (…). He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was distressed that he had said to him a third time, “Do you love me?” and he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep (…). And when he had said this, he said to him, “Follow me.”

Charity: to love God in our brothers

+ Fr. Antoni ORIOL i Tataret (Vic, Barcelona, Spain)

Today, in this passage of the Gospel of Saint John, it is to be highlighted the iteration of the verb "to say": up to ten times, as well as its contrast with the only time when Jesus crowns His words with the imperative: Follow me! But even more outstanding is the relationship between the verbs "to love" and "to graze".

The judgment criterion that values the degree of love Peter felt for Jesus is the level of love of the Apostle for the Lord’s flock: if you love me, graze my flock! Love incarnate in facts; once again, the vertical ascending to the heart of God sinks its roots in the horizontal land of love for humankind.

—O Lord, we realize You have hidden your most intimate presence with the neediest of our brothers. So intense is your profound love! Give us the joy of experiencing You in them by becoming partakers of your endearing and close solidarity!