Do Thou Follow Me.
The Seventh Saturday of Easter.
Lessons from the feria, according to the ordinary form of the Roman Rite:
• Acts 28: 16-20, 30-31.
• Psalm 11: 4-5, 7.
• John 21: 20-25.
The Vigil of Whitsunday.*
Lessons from the feria, according to the extraordinary form of the Roman Rite:
• Acts 19: 1-8.
• [The Gradual is omitted.]
• John 14: 15-21.
3:47 PM 5/19/2018 — This evening, with the Vigil of Pentecost, the Easter Season comes to a close, and today’s Gospel lesson is the Blessed Apostle John’s own signature to his long life in service to our Lord. He recounts an almost mystic conversation in which he, himself, is the topic, in which Peter questions our Lord about John, already suspecting that John would be the only one of our Lord’s disciples not to die a martyr’s death. Our Lord’s response to Peter is important: “If it is my will that he should wait till I come, what is it to thee? Do thou follow me” (John 21: 22 Knox). That command is given not only to Peter but to us all. We should not distract ourselves with the world and its pleasures, or what we may think we’re missing out on in not following the ways of the world. With our eyes facing forward, we should simply follow Him.
John’s Gospel ends here with the Blessed Apostle and Evangelist reminding us we will never know everything our Lord said and did during His time walking this earth, that there would not be enough room to hold the books if it were all written down. But that’s okay. Just as much of our Lord’s life remains a mystery to us, so does His ability to care for and protect us during our journey through this life. So, as we bid the Easter Season goodbye for another year and prepare to celebrate the sending of the Spirit, let’s all promise our Lord that we will make good use of the Spirit of grace he sends to us, confident that we will always receive from that Spirit the grace we need to follow our Blessed Lord faithfully.
* In the extraordinary form, the word “vigil” designates the entire day before a First Class Feast, and the Mass on that day takes place in the morning. The texts and lessons, while proper to the vigil, are always different from that of the feast itself, and no obligation is satisfied.
"Whitsunday" is nothing more than an anglicized name for Pentecost. Most editions of the Missal of St. John XXIII produced for use in English speaking countries use the title, but still refer to the octave and season following as those of Pentecost. In non-English speaking countries, the title "Whitsunday" is unknown. See the post for tomorrow's homily for Pentecost Sunday for more information.