We can forget, in our everyday lives, that in many ways we are better off than the first disciples.
Unlike them, we have Scripture to guide us, and we can look to the traditions of the Church to steer us on our way.
They were given the extraordinary gift of the Holy Spirit. This came from a promise from Jesus, as we hear in today’s Gospel. Later, in the upper room, they went through an unprecedented experience: the bestowal of the Holy Spirit upon them.
Despite, in many senses, being better off than those first disciples, we did not have that same experience as them. Not quite the same.
But the bestowal of the Holy Spirit was not a single event in space and time. In fact, it is still happening. As 2023 Christians, we are part of that initial outpouring of grace, and we are in just as special a position as those disciples, becasue God has given his gifts to us so that we may thrive.
What shall we do with those gifts? This is our story.
The Lord be with you
And with your spirit.
A reading from the Gospel according to John (14:15-21)
Glory to you, O Lord
Jesus said to his disciples:
‘If you love me you will keep my commandments.
I shall ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate
to be with you for ever, that Spirit of truth whom the world can never receive
since it neither sees nor knows him; but you know him, because he is with you, he is in you.
I will not leave you orphans; I will come back to you.
In a short time the world will no longer see me; but you will see me, because I live and you will live.
On that day you will understand that I am in my Father and you in me and I in you.
Anybody who receives my commandments and keeps them will be one who loves me; and anybody who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I shall love him and show myself to him.’
The Gospel of the Lord.
Praise to you O Jesus Christ.