Focusing the Gospel
Key words and phrases: Jesus came, I send you, breathed on them, Receive the Holy Spirit, forgive
Connecting the Gospel …
To the point: Jesus breathes the Holy Spirit into the disciples and by doing so he re-creates them. The life-giving breath poured forth at the dawn of creation is now the Spirit-breath, the very indwelling of God. Only because of this divine indwelling do we have the power to forgive and thus continue Jesus' saving mission. We are the incarnation of the risen Lord in our world today. We are re-created by the Holy Spirit. The sign of re-creation is forgiveness.
… to the Second Reading (Gal 5:16-25): Saint Paul identifies the fruits of being re-created by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. These fruits are Life-giving and oppose the works of the flesh Paul describes.
… to experience: We generally use the word “remain” to mean to “stay put.” The “remain in me” that Jesus speaks, however, calls us to move beyond where we are to embrace an ever widening circle of those whom we love.