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The Easter Octave - Friday


Friday in Easter Week: His Apparition upon a Mountain of Galilee

And the eleven disciples went into Galilee, unto the mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And seeing Him, they adored, but some doubted. And Jesus, coming, spoke to them, saying: power is given to Me in heaven and in earth. Going, therefore, teach ye all nations, bap- tising them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold, I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.

Summary of the Morrow’s Meditation

We will meditate tomorrow on the apparition of Jesus Christ to His apostles upon a mountain of Galilee, and we will make of the three portions of His discourse on that occasion the three points of our meditation. We will then make the resolution: first, often during the day to make acts of faith in the infallibility of the Church, and acts of love towards Jesus Christ, who, from love for us, gave it this blessed privilege; second, to keep ourselves recollected and united with Jesus Christ, who desires that we should be always with Him, even as He is always with us. Our spiritual nosegay shall be the words of Our Saviour: “Behold, I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world” (Matt. xxviii:20).

Meditation for the Morning

Let us adore Jesus Christ at the approach of His ascension collecting His apostles together upon a mountain of Galilee, and there giving them the mission to preach the gospel to all the nations, and to their successors the mission to preach it to the end of the world. Let us thank Him for this mission, which interests in the highest degree the whole universe and all coming ages. Let us admire the power and goodness which is shown herein. Let us praise the power, let us love the goodness.

All power, said Jesus Christ, has been given me in Heaven and upon Earth

What words, and what other than a Man-God could utter them! We have indeed often seen men invested with great power, but it has always been a limited power. Who has ever yet had power over the heavens, and over the winds, over thunder and storms, over sicknesses and death? Jesus Christ alone has had unlimited power in heaven and over the earth; the power of commanding the elements, of acting according to His own will over all creation. Of Him alone the astonished people have been able to say: “Who is this whom the winds and the waves obey?” O almighty power of my Saviour! I adore and I bless thee with my whole heart. I tremble for the sinners who do not tremble in presence of Thy omnipotence, O Jesus; but I rejoice for the just who serve Thee, for the apostles whom Thou dost send to the conquest of the world. They are indeed lambs in the midst of wolves, but what does that signify? They have nothing to fear, seeing that Thy omnipotence accompanies them. Thou wilt defend them against all assaults; Thou wilt sustain them in difficulties and trials. O all-powerful and good Master! what a consolation it is to see Thee at the head of Thy Church! How much of honour and respect do we not owe Thee for what Thou art in Thyself; of gratitude and love for what Thou hast done in the past; of confidence for what Thou wilt do in the future!

Go then, said Jesus Christ, teach all nations, baptising them in the name of the father, and of the son, and of the Holy Ghost, and teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you

These words are the consequence of those which preceded them; it is as though Jesus Christ had said: In virtue of and with the aid of the omnipotence which has been given Me, go and teach all nations, convert all the peoples, and extend My empire to the very extremities of the earth. The enterprise is, I know, beyond your strength, but not beyond My omnipotence. Doctors and depositaries of My doctrine, by you will be preserved in My Church the faith which makes saints. Blessed are ye to be chosen for so beautiful a mission, one which glorifies God and which saves souls! If, said St Catherine of Siena, anyone could see the beauty of a single soul, he would die a hundred times a day in order to save it. May we esteem, at this lofty price, souls, and the mission of saving them! “Baptise the nations,” continued Jesus Christ, “in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” Thanks, Lord, thanks for this revelation of the Most Holy Trinity a revelation the most clear and the most precise which until then had ever been made to the world; thanks for this institution of baptism, which makes of each one of us a child of God, an heir of heaven, and one of Thy members; thanks for all the sacraments, of which baptism is, as it were, the door, and which are the marvellous channels through which Thy grace flows upon us. “Teach all nations,” again said the Saviour, “to observe all that I have commanded you” I understand it, my God; faith without works is of no avail; faith is the torch which directs (Ps. cxviii:105); it shows us what we must do; but we cannot be saved except inasmuch as we really do it, and that we act from motives of faith; for works without faith are of no more merit for salvation than is faith without works. Let us learn from hence always to perform our works so as to be in harmony with our faith.

Behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world, said Jesus Christ in terminating his discourse

What magnificent words! They are the titles of the Church to infallibility; for if Jesus Christ assists it “all days” in its teaching, it cannot be deceived; he who listens to the Church listens to Jesus Christ. O delicious consolation! a God makes Himself the warrant of my belief. But it is not only whilst they teach that Jesus is with His apostles; He is even now with us all, through the love He bears us, and which follows us everywhere. To have Jesus Christ with us! What good the thought does to the heart which loves! Can one be in more delightful society? What good it does to the heart which feels itself to be weak! What have we to fear when we have His omnipotence with us? To have Jesus Christ with us in the blessed Tabernacle, where we can visit Him every day, speak to Him, expose to Him our joys and our sorrows; to have Jesus dwelling in the bottom of our hearts if we desire to find Him there, to enjoy Him by means of the practice of the interior

life, of recollection, and of love: what matter of confidence and peace!

Resolutions and spiritual nosegay as above.


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