What the world needs now 

A Gospel Enquiry

Introduction

We have a framed laser-cut copy of the Our Father in the shape of a cross. The last part of the prayer is a constant reminder that God loves and forgives us without end: “For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory forever. Amen.”

To give up hope for a just and lasting peace in the Middle East is to deny that God is present in the world and that God’s power is on display in the world around us. 

Monsignor Tomáš Halík reminds us that we are duty bound “to say to those rebels, skeptics, and weepers within and around us that maybe, in spite of everything, there is another way of seeing, assessing, and enduring all these things” (Night of the Confessor, 2012, Chapter 5).

May this Gospel Enquiry serve as a way of strengthening our faith, hope and love in and for God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. 

The Gospel 

Jesus raised his eyes to heaven and said:

‘Holy Father, I pray not only for these, but for those also who through their words will believe in me. May they all be one.

‘Father, may they be one in us, as you are in me and I am in you, so that the world may believe it was you who sent me. I have given them the glory you gave to me, that they may be one as we are one. With me in them and you in me, may they be so completely one that the world will realise that it was you who sent me and that I have loved them as much as you loved me.

‘Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, so that they may always see the glory you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world.

‘Father, Righteous One, the world has not known you, but I have known you and these have known that you have sent me. I have made your name known to them and will continue to make it known, so that the love with which you loved me may be in them, and so that I may be in them.’ (John 17:20-26)

The Enquiry 

See

  • The reading comes from John’s account of the Last Supper. Jesus is praying. What does he reveal about his relationship with God the Father, his relationship with his disciples and his relationship with us? 
  • What is distinctive about the sort of unity that Jesus seeks for the world? Why does Jesus pray for this? What was happening to give him cause to pray in this way?  
  • Has Jesus’ prayer been answered? Why or why not?

Judge

  • What do you think of Jesus’ prayer? Is it adequate? Is it irrelevant? 
  • How does his prayer fit with your experience of living in the twenty-first century?     
  • If Jesus is praying for you now … I believe he is praying for all of us all the time … what sort of prayer do you need him to pray? 

Act

  • What do you want to see changed in the world so that Jesus’ prayer for unity is answered?  
  • What can you do to bring about that change? What small action can you take that will contribute to bringing about this change? 
  • Who can you involve in your action and how, when and how often will you get them to participate in your action?

Author: Pat Branson 

Image Source: Julie Jablonski (Creator), Flickr, CC BY 2.0 DEED Attribution 2.0 Generic


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