Father John Doyle, LC
Jesus said to
his disciples: "As the Father loves me, so I
also love you. Remain in my love. If you keep
my commandments, you will remain in my love, just
as I have kept my Father´s commandments and remain
in his love. I have told you this so that
my joy may be in you and your joy
may be complete. This is my commandment: love one another
as I love you. No one has greater love
than this, to lay down one´s life for one´s
friends. You are my friends if you do what I
command you. I no longer call you slaves, because
a slave does not know what his master is doing.
I have called you friends, because I have told
you everything I have heard from my Father. It
was not you who chose me, but I who chose
you and appointed you to go and bear fruit
that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father
in my name he may give you. This I
command you: love one another."
Introductory Prayer:Lord, as I
begin this prayer I offer you my whole self: my
thoughts, desires, decisions, actions, hopes, fears, weaknesses, failures and
petty successes. I open my entire being to you,
aware that you know everything already. I’m certain of
your mercy and of the purifying power of your penetrating,
Petition:Jesus, let me
fulfill your command of charity.
1. The Greatest Love: Jesus makes
a startling comparison: He likens his love for his
disciples with the immense love his Father has for
him. Before even the world came to be, the Father
and the Son were immersed in boundless, mutual love.
The Holy Spirit is this bond of love. The
intimacy of the union and self-giving of the Blessed Trinity
surpasses any human comparison, and yet Our Lord tells
his disciples he loves them in a like manner.
Do I realize how deeply my Savior loves me? Does
the truth of Christ’s personal love for me, proven
from the height of the cross, fill me with
awe and find an ever more generous response in my
2. The Greatest Treasure: The circumstances and
timing surrounding Jesus’ designation of his disciples as friends
reiterates the authenticity of the title. Jesus is just a
few hours away from being abandoned and betrayed by
those he now calls friends. Still, Our Lord is
so moved by love that he looks beyond his followers’
betrayal, to the victory he is about to win
for them. Jesus also offers me his friendship. He
invites me to “remain in his love.” I am not
called to be a spectator, but to discover the
joy found in accompanying him. To follow the “Crucified One”
will always be demanding, but his friendship is a
treasure which far surpasses the weight of the cross.
3. Written on Our Hearts: The mutual love of
the Father and the Son, which Jesus gratuitously extends to
us as his friends, should bear fruit in charity.
The first Christians took very seriously Christ’s command of
charity. It was their distinctive mark. It set them apart
from the peoples among whom they lived. It was
the magnetic force that attracted so many to join
their ranks. The command to love each other is the
logical result of our personal worth as people loved
by the Lord. If Jesus loves my brother or
sister so much that he gave his life for him
or her, can there be any excuse for me
not to show respect and deference on their behalf?
Charity is the badge of every true Christian. How can
I better live Christ’s commandment of love, starting within
my own family?
Conversation with Christ: Jesus, I pray
that I will never cease to be astonished by
the depths of your personal love for me. You call
me your friend even though I have not always
lived up to the demands of this calling. I want
to be a better and truer friend of yours.
Resolution:I will show a simple act of kindness
to a member of my family today.