Thought for the Day – 27 April – Friday of the Fourth Week of Easter C, – Gospel: John 14:1-6
The Preservation of Unity
“And when I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.”...John 14:3
Saint Pope Clement I (Died 99)
Apostolic Father, Bishop of Rome and Martyr
An excerpt from his Letter to the Corinthians
Beloved, Jesus Christ is our salvation, He is the high priest through whom we present our offerings and the Helper, who supports us in our weakness. Through Him, our gaze penetrates the heights of heaven and we see as in a mirror, the most holy face of God. Through Christ, the eyes of our hearts are opened and our weak and clouded understanding, reaches up toward the light. Through Him, the Lord God willed, that we should taste eternal knowledge, for Christ is the radiance of God’s glory and as much greater than the angels, as the name God has given Him is superior to theirs.
So then, my brothers, let us do battle with all our might, under His unerring command. Think of the men serving under our military commanders. How well disciplined they are! How readily and submissively they carry out orders! Not everyone can be a prefect, a tribune, a centurion, or a captain of fifty but each man, in his own rank, executes the orders of the emperor and the officers in command. The great, cannot exist, without those of humble condition, nor can those of humble condition, exist without the great. Always, it is the harmonious working together, of its various parts, that insures the well-being of the whole. Take our own body as an example – the head is helpless without the feet and the feet can do nothing without the heart. Even our least important members, are useful and necessary, to the whole body and all work together for its well-being in harmonious subordination.
Let us, then, preserve the unity of the body that we form in Christ Jesus and let everyone give his neighbour the deference, to which his particular gifts, entitle him. Let the strong care for the weak and the weak respect the strong. Let the wealthy assist the poor and the poor man thank God for giving him someone to supply his needs. The wise man should show his wisdom, not by his eloquence but by good works, the humble man should not proclaim his own humility but leave others to do so, nor must the man who preserves his chastity, ever boast of it but recognise that the ability to control his desires has been given him by another.
Think, my brothers, of how we first came into being, of what we were at the first moment of our existence. Think of the dark tomb, out of which our Creator brought us into His world, where He had His gifts prepared for us, even before we were born. All this we owe to Him and for everything, we must give Him thanks. To Him be glory forever and ever. Amen