Sunday Mass for the 6th Sunday of Easter 2021 - Year B

May 9, 2021 07:00 · 4407 words · 21 minute read

Welcome to St. Ignatius Chapel. Today we celebrate the 6th Sunday of Easter.

00:07 - Our celebrant today is Jesuit Fr. Anthony Egan SJ.

01:01 - In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

01:04 - [Amen. ] The Lord be with you. [And with your spirit. ] On this 6th Sunday of Easter, we come before the Lord knowing we are sinners, yet loved by God.

01:15 - But the times where we struggle to see God’s love in our lives, we ask for mercy and forgiveness.

01:23 - You were sent to heal the contrite of heart.

01:25 - Lord, have mercy. [Lord, have mercy. ] You came to call sinners.

01:29 - Christ, have mercy. [Christ, have mercy. ] You intercede for us at the right hand of the Father.

01:34 - Lord, have mercy. [Lord, have mercy. ] May almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us our sins and bring us life everlasting.

01:42 - [Amen. ] Glory to God in the highest, and on earth, peace to people of good will.

01:50 - We praise you, we bless you, we adore you, we glorify you, we give you thanks for your great glory, Lord God, heavenly King, O God, almighty Father.

02:02 - Lord Jesus Christ, Only Begotten Son, Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us; you take away the sins of the world, receive our prayer; you are seated at the right hand of the Father, have mercy on us.

02:24 - For you alone are the Holy One, you alone are the Lord, you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father.

02:34 - Amen. Grant, almighty God, that we may celebrate with heartfelt devotion these days of joy, which we keep in honour of the risen Lord, and that what we relive in remembrance we may always hold to in what we do.

02:55 - Through our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

03:03 - [Amen. ] A reading from the Acts of the Apostles.

03:15 - When Peter entered, Cornelius met him and fell down at his feet and worshipped him.

03:22 - But Peter lifted him up, saying, “Stand up; I too am a man. ” And Peter opened his mouth and said: “Truly I perceive that God shows no partiality, but in every nation any one who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him. “ While Peter was still speaking, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the word.

03:52 - And the believers from among the circumcised who came with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles.

04:03 - For they heard them speaking in tongues and extolling God.

04:09 - Then Peter declared, “Can any one forbid water for baptising these people who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” And he commanded them to be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ.

04:25 - Then they asked him to remain for some days.

04:30 - The word of the Lord. [Thanks be to God. ] The Lord has shown his deliverance to the nations.

04:38 - [The Lord has shown his deliverance to the nations. ] O sing a new song to the Lord, for he has worked wonders.

04:48 - His right hand and his holy arm have brought salvation.

04:52 - [The Lord has shown his deliverance to the nations. ] The Lord has made known his salvation, has shown his deliverance to the nations.

05:03 - He has remembered his merciful love and his truth for the house of Israel.

05:08 - [The Lord has shown his deliverance to the nations. ] All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.

05:17 - Shout to the Lord, all the earth; break forth into joyous song, and sing out your praise.

05:24 - [The Lord has shown his deliverance to the nations. ] A reading from the first letter of Saint John.

05:33 - Beloved, let us love one another; for love is of God, and he who loves is born of God and knows God.

05:45 - He who does not love does not know God; for God is love.

05:51 - In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, so that we might live through him.

06:03 - In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent us his Son to be the expiation for our sins.

06:16 - The word of the Lord. [Thanks be to God. ] [Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!] If a man loves me, he will keep my word says the Lord; and my Father will love him and we will come to him.

06:46 - [Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!] The Lord be with you.

07:07 - [And with your spirit] A reading from the holy Gospel according to Saint John.

07:13 - [Glory to you, O Lord. ] At that time: Jesus said to his disciples, “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you; abide in my love.

07:26 - If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.

07:35 - These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.

07:41 - “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.

07:47 - Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

07:53 - You are my friends if you do what I command you.

07:56 - No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.

08:11 - You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide; so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.

08:26 - This I command you, to love one another. My brothers and sisters, the Gospel of the Lord.

08:32 - [Praise to you, Lord, Jesus Christ. ] Two themes – love and universalism – seem to dominate today’s readings.

08:50 - They are, I would suggest, closely connected.

08:54 - Indeed, the universalism of God’s grace we read about in Acts seems to be predicated on a kind of love that moves beyond narrow definitions into ever-widening spirals of inclusion.

09:09 - Love and the capacity to love breaks through love of self, love of family and love of immediate neighbour to love of a wider community, all of whom are seen to be within the love of God.

09:23 - And the love of God for each of us gives us the capacity to love more widely than ourselves and those in our immediate community.

09:30 - In John’s gospel Jesus calls on his disciples to love.

09:37 - An all-inclusive love in its implication, it echoes in many ways, though less explicitly, what we see in the other gospels, where he sums it up as: love God, love neighbour, and love yourself.

09:51 - Read against the whole of the gospel of John, where Jesus’ mission from the start moves beyond narrow boundaries of race and clan, this is to be presumed.

10:01 - By the point reached in today’s reading the disciples have seen this inclusive love in action and are invited to do the same.

10:11 - As we are. That is the theory: love of God, love of neighbour, love yourself.

10:18 - But, let’s be honest, this is far more difficult in practice.

10:25 - We find – no, let me be direct: I find – it very hard to believe, even if we try to practice it.

10:34 - For most Christians, I think, the easiest might be love of God – or at least that’s what we might think! After all that is what we are told we are supposed to do.

10:46 - At different times in the past, for too many of us however the imperative to love God – and follow God’s commands – was more than an invitation.

10:56 - It was a command that came with a warning: if you don’t love God you’ll go to hell.

11:04 - That and following to the letter God’s moral commands – usually interpreted through the Church’s teaching, like the Mass on Sundays rule.

11:16 - Unfortunately, I suspect the net effect of such an approach is that all too many of us have confused love with fear: if you don’t love God, God will get you! Hardly an incentive to love! And with fear posing as love of God comes, dare I say it, a kind of resentment, and a grudging and often affected (even slightly ‘forced’) love for God.

11:41 - This merely has added the fuel of an unhealthy tyrant dimension to the already unhelpful image of God as distant.

11:51 - If one was lucky you might have had some kind of prayer experience of a loving God to offset the negative stuff.

11:57 - But not everyone has. Unless one has a powerful experience of God’s unconditional love in our lives, and indeed if we are willing to accept the experience for what it is (as opposed to rationalising it away, which I confess I do all too often!), this kind of love may be the most elusive on the level of experience.

12:21 - Some Christians, particularly those of an activist leaning, see love as love of neighbour.

12:26 - We do good things, stand up for justice, practice compassion and love our neighbour, and strive to make a better place.

12:35 - Some even say that we love God by loving our neighbour.

12:39 - We find God reflected in others, particularly those who are poor, oppressed and struggling for a decent life.

12:45 - In them we see and love the Christ reflected in them.

12:48 - It sounds good, but we know that it’s not easy.

12:54 - People – even those most in need, most deserving of justice – are often difficult, hard work and even ungrateful! Do we love our neighbour out of real love or a sense of duty? I cannot help but think of a cartoon character – I think it may have been Snoopy or one of his friends – who said “I love humanity.

13:16 - It’s people I can’t stand”. So then, what of love of self.

13:22 - Oh dear! For many Christians that is a bit of a non-starter.

13:27 - It is all too often seen as selfishness, narcissism or worse.

13:33 - Quite often we’ve even been told this! This confuses however two categories, but it’s a mistake we make.

13:42 - ONLY caring for myself is selfish, is narcissistic.

13:46 - But to care for oneself as a being created in the image of God – orthodox Christian doctrine – is not selfish.

13:54 - It is an acknowledgement of our worth. In turn by seeing myself as image of God, it is an easier step (assuming we try to be consistent!) to see and love others as images of God too – even those who at times by their actions make such a realisation difficult.

14:16 - This seeing the other as an image of God is brilliantly illustrated for me in Victor Hugo’s book and the musical based on it, “Les Miserables. ” When the saintly bishop gives the fugitive Valjean a second chance, Valjean is challenged – slowly one must add – to move beyond fear and hatred to love and service.

14:38 - Indeed at the end of the musical, as Valjean is dying, the spirit of Fantine - a woman whose child he has adopted – and the chorus sum up the theme in the words “To love another person is to see the face of God. ” This echoes the reading today in 1 John.

14:56 - Love is of God and God is love. The love we show for others is an expression, however anonymously, of how we ought to love God.

15:08 - We may not reach some kind of direct love of God, whether because of an image of God that was more bogeyman than loving parent or for some other reason, but perhaps in moving beyond selfishness through an acknowledgement of self-worth to recognising the worth of others, we may come ‘anonymously’ to a deeper love that even if it does not directly translate into God-language might constitute a ‘hidden’ love of God.

15:37 - An expansive love that reflects God’s own expansive love, even if we are still uneasy for whatever reason to acknowledge God’s love for us.

15:51 - Perhaps we should look again at 1 John – and our account in Acts today – to see how this is expressed.

15:58 - Everyone who loves is in God, for God is in them.

16:03 - And for those of us who still recover from the effects of a less than loving, often deeply exclusive, image of God, look to the point Peter makes – a point that like many of us today he had to struggle with: God has no favourites.

16:21 - And by inference there are no people God loathes.

16:25 - Not even us, not even me. No-one – not nations, not religions, not races, not communities, not genders nor sexual orientations.

16:37 - Not even the people we know whom we hate or drive us insane.

16:43 - And not even our own selves, however unlikeable we think we may be.

16:49 - God’s love is universal and unconditional. This is today’s message; this is the message of the Resurrection.

17:01 - We must embrace it. Above all we must try to live it.

17:06 - Keep telling yourself that, maybe one day we’ll truly believe it.

17:11 - Maybe, one day, I’ll truly believe it. Let us as a community profess the faith we all share by saying together the Apostles’ Creed.

17:38 - I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of Heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, His only Son Our Lord, Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried.

17:59 - He descended into Hell; on the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into Heaven, and is seated at the right hand of God, the Father almighty; from there He will come to judge the living and the dead.

18:13 - I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body and life everlasting.

18:26 - [Amen. ] Let us then bring before the Lord all our prayers and petitions on this day.

18:40 - We pray that the Lord will help us to overcome our inability to love – to love ourselves, others and God.

18:49 - We pray that in our striving to love ourselves and others we may come to a deeper love for God.

18:59 - Lord hear us. [Lord, graciously hear us. ] We pray that God’s universal vision of inclusion may be translated by all people into a spirit of loving embrace for those unlike themselves.

19:14 - We pray that this embrace may extend to all sentient beings that share the planet.

19:21 - Lord hear us. [Lord, graciously hear us. ] We pray that the Church in our word and practice may always be a sign of inclusion and welcome.

19:32 - May we embrace all people regardless of race, social status, genders and sexual orientation.

19:43 - Lord hear us. [Lord, graciously hear us. ] We pray that all who hold positions of power in public life – politicians, business, media, and social influencers – may use their abilities to promote inclusion.

20:03 - Lord hear us. [Lord, graciously hear us. ] We pray today for all mothers and mother-figure in our lives.

20:12 - May God bless each one and confirm in their hearts the work of their hands and the love that they so freely give to those in their care.

20:21 - Give all mothers the patience to deal with the challenges of motherhood and, most of all, give them a special blessing to know they are loved and cherished.

20:34 - Lord hear us [Lord, graciously hear us. ] For your own prayers.

20:48 - Lord hear us. [Lord, graciously hear us. ] Loving God, receive the prayers we have made, those spoken out loud, those we bring to you from deep within our hearts.

21:02 - We ask you to help us in particular to grow every day deeper in your love and in the love of all those around us.

21:11 - We make this prayer through Christ our Lord.

21:14 - [Amen. ] Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation, through your goodness we have this bread to offer: fruit of the earth, work of human hands, it will become for us the bread of life.

21:45 - [Blessed be God for ever. ] Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation, through your goodness we have this wine to offer: fruit of the vine, work of human hands, it will become our spiritual drink.

22:07 - [Blessed be God for ever. ] Pray, my brothers and sisters, that my sacrifice and yours may be acceptable to God our almighty Father.

22:24 - [May the Lord accept the sacrifice at your hands for the praise and glory of God’s name, for our good and the good of all God’s holy Church. ] My our prayers rise up to you, O Lord, together with the sacrificial offerings, so that, purified by your graciousness, we may be conformed to the mysteries of your mighty love.

22:46 - [Amen] The Lord be with you. [And with your spirit. ] Lift up your hearts.

22:54 - [We lift them up to the Lord. ] Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

22:58 - [It is right and just. ] It is truly right and just, our duty and salvation, at all times to acclaim you, O Lord, but in this time above all to laud you yet more gloriously when Christ our Passover has been sacrificed.

23:12 - For, with the old order destroyed, a universe cast down is renewed, and integrity of life is restored to us in Christ. Therefore, overcome with paschal joy, every land, every people exult in your praise and even the heavenly Powers, with the angelic hosts, sing together the unending hymn of your glory, as they acclaim: Holy, Holy, Holy [Lord God of hosts.

23:35 - Heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest.

23:40 - Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.

23:48 - Hosanna in the highest. ] You are indeed Holy, O Lord, the fount of all holiness.

23:52 - Make holy, therefore, these gifts, we pray, by sending down your Spirit upon them like the dew fall, so that they may become for us the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ.

24:01 - At the time he was betrayed and entered willingly into his Passion, he took bread and, giving thanks, broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying: TAKE THIS, ALL OF YOU, AND EAT OF IT, FOR THIS IS MY BODY, WHICH WILL BE GIVEN UP FOR YOU.

24:23 - In a similar way, when supper was ended, he took the chalice and, once more giving thanks, he gave it to the disciples, saying: TAKE THIS, ALL OF YOU, AND DRINK FROM IT, FOR THIS IS THE CHALICE OF MY BLOOD, THE BLOOD OF THE NEW AND ETERNAL COVENANT, WHICH WILL BE POURED OUT FOR YOU AND FOR THE MANY FOR THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS.

24:41 - DO THIS IN MEMORY OF ME. The mystery of faith.

24:55 - When we eat this Bread and drink this Cup, we proclaim your Death, O Lord, until you come again.

25:03 - Therefore, as we celebrate the memorial of his Death and Resurrection, we offer you, Lord, the Bread of life and the Chalice of salvation, giving thanks that you have held us worthy to be in your presence and minister to you.

25:17 - Humbly we pray that, partaking of the Body and Blood of Christ, we may be gathered into one by the Holy Spirit.

25:24 - Remember, Lord, your Church, spread throughout the world, and bring her to the fullness of charity, together with Francis our Pope and Buti our Archbishop and all the clergy.

25:36 - Remember all our brothers and sisters who have fallen asleep in the hope of the resurrection, and all who have died in your mercy: welcome them into the light of your face.

25:46 - Have mercy on us all, we pray, that with the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, with Saint Joseph her spouse, with the blessed Apostles, and all the Saints who have pleased you throughout the ages, we may merit to be coheirs to eternal life, and may praise and glorify you through your Son, Jesus Christ.

26:06 - Through him, and with him, and in him, O God, almighty Father, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honour is yours, for ever and ever.

26:16 - [Amen. ] At the Saviour’s command and formed by divine teaching we dare to say: Our Father, [who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

26:38 - Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. ] Deliver us, Lord, we pray, from every evil, graciously grant peace in our days.

26:56 - That by the help of your mercy, we may be always free from sin and safe from all distress, as we await the blessed hope and the coming of our Saviour, Jesus Christ.

27:06 - [For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours now and for ever. ] Lord Jesus Christ, you said to your Apostles: Peace I leave you, my peace I give you, look not on our sins, but on the faith of your Church, and graciously grant her peace and unity in accordance with your will, who live and reign for ever and ever.

27:26 - [Amen. ] The peace of the Lord be with you.

27:30 - [And with your spirit. ] Lamb of God, [you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.

27:40 - Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.

27:45 - Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, grant us peace. ] My brothers and sister, behold, the Lamb of God, the one who takes away the sins of the world, how blessed are we who are called to the supper of the Lamb.

27:59 - [Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed. ] May the Body and the Blood of Christ bring us life everlasting.

28:10 - [Amen. ] Although you cannot receive physical communion with us now, we invite you into a moment of spiritual communion.

28:28 - The great medieval theologian, St. Thomas Aquinas, defined spiritual communion as: “an ardent desire to receive Jesus in the Holy Sacrament”, and “a loving embrace as though we had already received him. ” His words are echoed by the great mystic, and fellow doctor of the church, St. Teresa of Avila, who wrote: “When you do not receive Communion, and do not attend Mass, you can make a spiritual communion which is a most beneficial practice.

28:59 - By it, the love of God will be greatly impressed on you. ” At this moment we invite you to focus on Christ, and your longing for union with him.

29:13 - Express your desire to feel his grace coursing through you, giving you strength and courage, particularly in these difficult times.

29:23 - In your desiring union you are united with us, and to Christ.

29:29 - In this moment we experience the reality that is already here.

31:05 - Let us pray. Almighty ever-living God, who restore us to eternal life in the resurrection of Christ, increase in us we pray, the fruits of this Paschal Sacrament and pour into our hearts the strength of this saving food.

31:21 - Through Christ, our Lord. [Amen. ] It is Easter, so we have a special blessing.

31:29 - May God, who by the resurrection of his only begotten Son was pleased to confer on you the gift of redemption and of adoption, give you gladness by his blessing.

31:44 - [Amen. ] May he, by whose redeeming work you have received the gift of everlasting freedom, make you heirs to an eternal inheritance.

31:54 - [Amen. ] And may you, who have risen with Christ in Baptism through faith, by living in a right manner on this earth, be united with him in the homeland of heaven.

32:04 - [Amen. ] And may the blessing of almighty God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, come down on you and remain with you forever.

32:14 - [Amen. ] Our mass is ended, let us remain in the peace of Christ.

32:19 - Alleluia, alleluia. [Thanks be to God.

32:22 - Alleluia, alleluia. ].