Sixth Sunday of Easter

Dee Sproule

May 22, 2022

Ardor...zeal...enthusiasm!  All words that are often used to describe the start of a project or mission. We transition from the sombre, reflective season of Lent and burst into the jubilation of the Easter season! Easter disappears from stores immediately following Easter Sunday as the Easter bunnies make their way for swim goggles and air mattresses. We, however, have a lengthy time to revel in this season and the sense of new life within ourselves, which is breathtakingly reflected in God's creation as new growth abounds. Trees are in blossom, buds are everywhere, flowers push themselves through chilled soil stretching for the sun. Accounts from the Acts of the Apostles inspire us to accept our mission to "go make disciples of all nations." And yet, we can imagine how those first disciples might have been feeling about their efforts to spread the Good News so many weeks post-Resurrection. Six weeks is a long time to maintain the level of energy which heralded the Easter season. We begin with the best of intentions, but our daily routines, the weight of world events, resistance and discouragement can all contribute to a decrease in ardor, zeal, and enthusiasm with which we began our apostolate.  Worries, fears and anxiety skulk back into the "wings" of our mind, ready to take the stage. Possibly, the sixth Sunday of Easter might be viewed as  a sort of checkpoint for us.  Relinquishing this holy season, perhaps we will take stock of how well we are doing in our ministry, and decide what changes may need to be made to sustain our efforts. Here is where today's Gospel message becomes so significant. "Peace I leave with you. My peace I give not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid."  Jesus' words are where we find reassurance and solace. We are given the gift of peace, not the "peace" that the world offers, but the gift of God's peace delivered directly into the depths of our souls. Accepting the gift of peace, we will renew our efforts and resume our mission empowered by the Holy Spirit."...the Advocate. the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you,"  We are not alone! It is up to us to love Jesus and keep his word. "Jesus said to his disciples: "Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him." To host such divine guests is to be assured that we will be given all we need to remain faithful to our mission. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ!