Eng Esp Mary Immaculate
Catholic Church / Pacoima, CA

Living Branches

Fifth Sunday of Easter

“I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever remains in me and I in him will bear much fruit, because without me you can do nothing.” John 15:5

The Gospel and second reading for this Fifth Sunday of Easter emphasize the need for us to remain in Christ, and he in us. This shared life finds expression in the image of the one vine and many branches. We become living branches of the vine, members of the Body of Christ through baptism, Eucharist, and confirmation, sacraments of sharing God’s own life. The First Letter of John describes the fruit of this vine as active love of neighbor: “And his commandment is this: we should believe . . . and love one another” (1 John 3:23).

Our first reading from Acts shows us an example of someone who shares in Christ’s life in the person of Saint Paul. Paul’s fearless witness, even at the risk of his life, is proof to everyone that the risen Lord’s Spirit truly fills him with life and is bearing fruit in him.

Copyright © J. S. Paluch Co

Pope Francis: When You Have Met the Risen Christ You Can Not Stand Still

After meeting with the people of Alessano, Pope Francis visited Molfetta and celebrated a Mass in which he defended that when one has met the risen Christ he has no choice but to announce it with courage and humility. “The Christian life has to be invested in Jesus and spent by others. After you have found the Risen One you can not wait, you can not leave for later; you need to go, go out, despite all the problems and uncertainties.” “The Word of God does so: liberate, enhance, make go forward, humble and courageous at the same time. It does not make us protagonists or established champions of our own bonanzas, but genuine testimonies of Jesus in the world,” he said.

The celebration was held in the Port of Molfetta and attended by thousands of faithful. In his homily, he spoke of the “two central elements of the Christian life; the Word and the Bread”. “For our life it is essential to enter into a vital, personal relationship with Him,” he said. “The Eucharist is this: it is not a beautiful rite, but the most intimate, most concrete, most surprising communion that can be imagined with God.” “The Christian life begins again from here, from this table where God fills us with love. Without Him, Bread of life, every effort in the Church is vain“, as Don Tonino Bello recalled.

The Holy Father explained that Christ “is the Bread cut into pieces by us and whoever receives it becomes turn into bread cut into pieces, which has no leaven of pride, but is given to others. Stop living for yourself, for your own success, to have anything or become someone. Live for Jesus and like Jesus, that is, for others “. In this sense, he also alluded to whoever eats this Bread “has the Christian’s trademark”. But also the Bread is “Bread of peace” and Francis maintained that “we, who share this Bread of unity and peace, are called to love every face, to repair every tear, to be, whenever and wherever, builders of peace.” About the Word, he said that sometimes there are people who are immediately ready “to discuss the words of Jesus before accepting the change of life requested by Him”. “Don Tonino, precisely at the time of Easter, wanted to welcome this newness of life, finally moving from words to deeds”.

Source: ACI Prensa

Readings for the Week

Monday: Acts 14:5-18; Ps 115:1-4, 15-16; Jn 14:21-26
Tuesday: Acts 14:19-28; Ps 145:10-13ab, 21; Jn 14:27-31a
or (for the memorial) Gn 1:26 — 2:3 or Col 3:14-15, 17, 23-24; Ps 90:2-4, 12-14, 16; Mt 13:54-58
Wednesday: Acts 15:1-6; Ps 122:1-5; Jn 15:1-8
Thursday: 1 Cor 15:1-8; Ps 19:2-5; Jn 14:6-14
Friday: Acts 15:22-31; Ps 57:8-10, 12; Jn 15:12-17
Saturday: Acts 16:1-10; Ps 100:1b-3, 5; Jn 15:18-21
Sunday: Acts 10:25-36, 34-35, 44-48; Ps 98:1-4; 1 Jn 4:7-10 or 1 Jn 4:11-16; Jn 15:9-17 or Jn 17:11b-19

Saints & Special Observances

Sunday: Fifth Sunday of Easter
Monday: St. Pius V
Tuesday: St. Joseph the Worker
Wednesday: St. Athanasius
Thursday: Ss. Philip and James; National Day of Prayer
Friday: First Friday
Saturday: First Saturday; Cinco de Mayo