Homily for the 7th Sunday of Easter Year C
Theme: Our Mission
By: Fr. Benny Tuazon
Homily: (Jn. 17:20-26) Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord Jesus Into Heaven
In today’s Gospel Jesus talks to His Father about His mission. It was an intimate prayer expressing His union with the Father and His care for God’s People. Mission accomplished. It was not time to go back and send the Holy Spirit. His Ascension was a sign of victory at the same time the beginning of the mission of the apostles which later became the Church.
The mission was to baptize everyone in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. It means inviting everyone to conversion and to be a member of God’s Holy family. It was the same which JESUS accomplished during His life and ministry. Now, the mission is entrusted to the Church which had the apostles as witnesses of JESUS. The other message is the assurance of Jesus’ presence in the Spirit. The Spirit guarantees Jesus’ active involvement in the work of the apostles and the Church. “I will be with you always until the end of age.” Having the Lord not only on our backs but in us give us that confidence and courage to live our faith and proclaim the Good News.
Thousands of years had passed since Jesus ascended into heaven to His Father. How have we, as a baptized Christian and as a Church, fared with respect to the mission JESUS entrusted to us? Yes, every Sunday, lots of babies are being baptized to belong to the faith. Sacraments are celebrated regularly in churches, chapels, and even offices. Devotions are still practiced. Holy places attract millions of visitors. The Church is still recognized as a force in the world today. But how are we as Christians, followers of Christ? We had produced a number of saints. But is not our call to be saints? The call to holiness is universal to the members of the Church. No less is expected of us. Here, we have to admit, we are wanting if not failing.
This is the purpose of today’s feast. It reminds us of our mission at the same time helps us reflect on our own holiness. We are not only concerned with the conversion and holiness of others. We are equally concerned with our own holiness. When Jesus comes back, which He promised, will He find us faithful and holy!