April 10, 2016: Third Sunday of Easter

Simon, son of John, do you love me? (John 21: 16)

            We throw that word “love” around so easily. But most of us have no idea what it really means or the implications that are involved in it. Remembering that the New Testament was written in Greek, we have to be clear with language. The Greek word here for love was agape. Agape love is self-sacrificing love. It is love that wills the good of the other as other and then does something about it. So Jesus hear is asking Peter, “Will you sacrifice yourself for me? Will you will my good before your own?” Love is a choice, it is a decision, it is an act of the will. This is the kind of love that Jesus is asking of Peter. And this is the love that Jesus demands of us as well. We remember the new commandment at the Last Supper, “Love one another as I have loved you.”

            So today we ask ourselves, “Do I have this kind of love, this agape, this self-sacrificing love for Christ in my life?” For this is the true love that the world needs today.

Fr. Michael Mateyk, C.PP.S. (Atlantic)

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