Memory of the Church

分享


Reading of the Word of God

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

I am the good shepherd,
my sheep listen to my voice,
and they become
one flock and one fold.
.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

1 Corinthians 15,1-11

I want to make quite clear to you, brothers, what the message of the gospel that I preached to you is; you accepted it and took your stand on it, and you are saved by it, if you keep to the message I preached to you; otherwise your coming to believe was in vain. The tradition I handed on to you in the first place, a tradition which I had myself received, was that Christ died for our sins, in accordance with the scriptures, and that he was buried; and that on the third day, he was raised to life, in accordance with the scriptures; and that he appeared to Cephas; and later to the Twelve; and next he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still with us, though some have fallen asleep; then he appeared to James, and then to all the apostles. Last of all he appeared to me too, as though I was a child born abnormally. For I am the least of the apostles and am not really fit to be called an apostle, because I had been persecuting the Church of God; but what I am now, I am through the grace of God, and the grace which was given to me has not been wasted. Indeed, I have worked harder than all the others -- not I, but the grace of God which is with me. Anyway, whether it was they or I, this is what we preach and what you believed.

 

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

I give you a new commandment,
that you love one another.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Up to now the apostle wanted to give order to the community in Corinth: he resolved some moral issues and gave some rules of behaviour also in the liturgical assemblies. Now he takes on the central mystery of faith which is also at the heart of the liturgical celebration which he places particular emphasis on: the mystery of Jesus' resurrection. It is the heart of the Gospel Paul is preaching: "I proclaimed to you, which you in turn received, in which also you stand." But he warns: "if you hold firmly to the message that I proclaimed to you." Christian faith, even in its substance, is a gift to be received. And at the centre is Jesus' resurrection of the body from death. The apostle violently opposes those who claim there is no resurrection from death. By saying so, they would annul Jesus' resurrection and consequently the Gospels, and our faith would be in vain. Salvation, instead, is precisely this: Jesus rose from the dead and became the "firstborn" the "first of those sleeping," that is the first of the children of God who reawakens to life and reaches full salvation. Jesus gave the disciples a foretaste of it when, after Easter, he stayed with them for forty days. First, he appeared to the Twelve and then, in one time, to more than 500 brothers, of whom-Paul notes-most were still living. They could see Jesus with their own eyes-Jesus who had been crucified, resurrected and overcome death. Jesus' disciples-of every age, including us-journey toward the resurrection which will come, at the end of time, when God will be everything in everyone. It is the mystery which we celebrate each Sunday in the Eucharist. And the Church has us say, after the consecration: "We proclaim your death and resurrection Lord, until you come again."