Fourth Week of Easter Weekday Wednesday
Standing in front of the 8th graders invite them to stand and be recognized for being confirmed Monday night by Bishop Walkowiak. Applause! As I was reflecting on these readings, I could not help but think how perfect they were for you. (Remain standing)
Our Gospel today is really a summary of the first twelve chapters of the gospel of John. John is establishing that Jesus, and the Father are one. When we look at Jesus, we see also the Father. Jesus was sent by the Father to proclaim his word, which is always about following the light; it is never about darkness. Jesus never speaks on his own, but only for the Father.
In our first, reading is all about doing this as Barnabas and Saul have been set apart from the community to do the will of Father. After completing their fasting and prayer, the community lays hands on them, and they are sent off by the Holy Spirit. This is now your role to do what you are called to do.
At the time of your baptism, you were anointed priest, prophet and king. You were anointed as priest, to act always in reverence, and strive to be holy at all times. You were anointed as prophet to proclaim the word of God even when it may be uncomfortable to do so. You were anointed as king to know that you have been given a power, a power to be used for good not evil.
You now have been set apart, sealed with the Holy Spirit and are being sent out. You may not be as worldly as some other eight graders, but that is ok; it is about being spiritual. It is not about how we are feeling, but about doing the will of the Father. It is demanding, and it is not about being comfortable; it is about the mission of Christ.
May you never forget you have been chosen by Christ, for a purpose and a mission, and you have now been given all that you need for that mission. The Eucharist is given to us today, that all of us share in that mission with you.