Year B: 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Second Reading: 2 Corinthians 5: 14-17
After the long break of Lent and Eastertime, we resume our reading from the second letter of St Paul to the people living in Corinth. If you have time, it may be worth reading the passages we have not used as there are some important thoughts and insights there.
Today’s reading focuses on the problems of life and death and how to understand what Jesus’ risen - and ascended life means.
In some languages Jesus is referred to as the Christ - a little like referring to “the Queen” “the Prime Minister”, “the President” and so on. This can be quite helpful as it reminds us that Christ is not Jesus’ surname but a title - Jesus the Christ - Jesus the Anointed One. It is especially helpful in helping us to distinguish between the Jesus who walked the earth - and the Risen Jesus who has returned to the Father. He is the same person - but something has happened which makes Him “other” - or different.
That “something” is his death and resurrection. Through his death, Jesus secured the salvation of all humanity. This love is what transforms lives allowing human beings to live in a different dimension. Jesus died and was raised and, in that risen life is given the title, the Christ. Our lives too no longer focus on the things of earth but are reoriented towards heaven where the Christ now lives.
As human beings living on the earth, we cannot meet Jesus as his disciples did - for us, the encounter needs the gift of the Holy Spirit to open our minds and hearts to the living presence of Christ. Where such a gift is given, the person finds that they have changed - and, in fact, will find that they continue to change as they grow closer to the person of Christ. This change can be radical - like being reborn - becoming a new creation.
Those who are baptised as adults will identify with this feeling - those baptised as children may need to look more closely at their lives to find those moments when God did something new - and brought about a deep change which transformed their life.
What does it mean for me?
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