Minute Meditations


The Gift of Love

The Cenacle, the room on the second floor spoken of by the Gospel, is one of the most treasured and beautiful places connected to our faith. The current walls of this cross-shaped room are thus not exactly the walls of the room Jesus was in. However, we do know that the uninterrupted tradition of the Church has recognized this place in which Jesus was together with his disciples on the last night of his earthly life for what we call the Last Supper. The foot-washing is the symbolic gesture through which Jesus prepared his disciples to think about the mystery of his death and to understand how the Eucharist is the renewal of that same gift of love. “Through my death, which is the gift of my body and blood, I am doing the highest service of life for you that can be done. I wash your life; I save it; I bring it into full communion with the Father.” This is why Jesus threatens to exclude Peter from having any part in him if he rejects Jesus’s gesture. This is the approach that every disciple of the Lord Jesus should take: mutual service through the gift of one’s life for the salvation for brothers and sisters.

—from the book Encountering Jesus: A Holy Land Experience by Vincenzo Peroni



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Jesus Can Teach Us about Grief

The last time Jesus goes up to Jerusalem, very shortly before being arrested and crucified, he bursts into tears when looking over the city of Jerusalem. Let us ask Jesus in this place to teach us about grief. How many times do we groan and cry, even if the tears are not real, for things that are not very significant in life! It seems that when some good things are taken away from us, or we fail to reach the goals we had set, it is the end of the world for us. It seems we are missing out on life, but often it does not involve anything essential. And yet we do not experience the same suffering when we see that communion with the Lord, for us or for others, is compromised. The word passion has two shades of meaning, both of which are good. Passion is certainly a kind of suffering, a sorrow, but passion is also an inner stirring that can lead us to something else. Jesus demonstrates to us here both aspects of this word: his passion of love for the Father and for the salvation of human beings leads him to undergo a passion of suffering. Our Christian life should imitate Jesus in this: to be so passionate about God and salvation that we accept the suffering of giving up our goals and projects and what we believe to be right in order to adhere to his will. Jesus taught us that in the Our Father: “May your will be done.” Through his weeping, Jesus purifies our desires and helps us turn back to what is truly essential.

—from the book Encountering Jesus: A Holy Land E by Vincenzo Peroni



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