Homily for Friday, Fifth Week of Easter

Acts 15:22-31

Jn 15:12-17

In this morning’s gospel reading, Jesus uses the language of friendship to describe his relationship with us. He declares that he befriends us by laying down his life for us. During the second world war in a Nazi concentration camp, Maximilian Kolbe, a Polish priest, gave his life so that a fellow prisoner, a married man, might live. He befriended that man in the most radical way possible. His act of friendship is a living sign of how Jesus befriends us. Jesus died so that we might live with the life of God, eternal life. We will not normally be called upon to befriend others in the radical way Maximilian Kolbe befriended that prisoner. Within the more ordinary experience of friendship, friends tend to share deeply with each other; they share what is in their hearts and minds with one another. Jesus expresses his friendship of us in this way too. As he says in the gospel reading, ‘I call you friends… I have made known to you everything I have learnt from my Father’. Our calling is to accept the Lord’s gift of friendship and to befriend him as he has befriended us. Jesus declares that the way to do that is by living his new commandment to love one another as he has loved us. In other words, we befriend him in response to his friendship of us by befriending one another as he has befriended us. Amen.

SAINT ISIDORE (+1130) was a husband whose wife, Maria de la Cabeza Torribia, is also a saint. He was a simple farmer who lived a miraculous life and is the patron of farmers and those who live in rural communities.

Fr. John Peter
Kigoowa Parish.

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