Sunday Vigil

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Reading of the Word of God

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Whoever lives and believes in me
will never die.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

John 6,16-21

That evening the disciples went down to the shore of the sea and got into a boat to make for Capernaum on the other side of the sea. It was getting dark by now and Jesus had still not rejoined them. The wind was strong, and the sea was getting rough. They had rowed three or four miles when they saw Jesus walking on the sea and coming towards the boat. They were afraid, but he said, 'It's me. Don't be afraid.' They were ready to take him into the boat, and immediately it reached the shore at the place they were making for.

 

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

If you believe, you will see the glory of God,
thus says the Lord.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

After the multiplication of the loaves, seeing that the crowd wanted to make him king, Jesus flees alone on the mountain. The disciples, who were remained alone, take the boat and go towards Capernaum. They return home. It was night, notes the evangelist, not so much for the hour but for Jesus' absence. Moreover the lake is rough. It is a scene that symbolizes the innumerable tempests that come up in everyone's life. They find us frightened and scared. Suffering upsets us. Natural disasters leave us speechless, as it happened in the recent pandemic. At times the abyss of evil that seems to seize power over men and women frightens us, causing us to doubt and to have little hope in our future and that of the world. But Jesus is not far, even during the dark and most dramatic moments. Even today Jesus continues to "walk" on the tumultuous waters of the story of men and women among the waves and doubts that assault us and make our life even sad and difficult. In truth, we are the ones to forget him or, worse, flee from him, as it happens to the apostles that evening. The evangelist writes: "They saw Jesus walking on the lake and coming near the boat, and they were terrified." How many times we too, instead of allowing ourselves to be consoled and reassured by the Gospel and by our friends, often prefer to remain alone with our fear! Besides, fear is a feeling so natural and spontaneous that we recognize as more "ours" than God's closeness. Fortunately the truth is other: Jesus' love for us is much more solid than our fear. Even if we prefer to keep clutching the boat of our illusory security, believing proudly that by ourselves we will be able to weather life's hurricanes, Jesus draws close and says also to us: "It is I; do not be afraid." The disciples' security does not rely on their own strength or experience, but on entrusting themselves to the Lord. It is the Lord who comes to our aid, who gets into our boat and leads us to a safe port.