May 17, 2015: Seventh Sunday of Easter
Lifting up his eyes to heaven, Jesus prayed saying:
“Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are one. When I was with them I protected them in your name that you gave me, and I guarded them, and none of them was lost except the son of destruction, in order that the Scripture might be fulfilled.
But now I am coming to you. I speak this in the world so that they may share my joy completely.
I gave them your word, and the world hated them, because they do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world.
I do not ask that you take them out of the world but that you keep them from the evil one.
They do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world.
Consecrate them in the truth. Your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, so I sent them into the world.
And I consecrate myself for them , so that they also may be consecrated in truth. (John 17:11B-19)
One of the first questions in the Catechism is Why did God create me? The answer given is…to know, love and serve God and be happy with God in this world and the next. When Jesus says His followers do not belong to the world, He refers to the world that rejects God’s word. He prays to the Father not to take them from this world but to keep them from the evil one.
We belong to two worlds – the earthly material world, as well as the spiritual world true to God’s design. When Jesus sends us, His disciples, out into the earthly world, it is to bring God’s word and God’s blessing to it.