Working for the Word
Focusing the Gospel
Key words and phrases: Remain in my love, love one another, lay down one's life, I have called you friends
To the point: Jesus issues two commands in this gospel: to remain in his love and to love one another. Actually the two commands are one: remaining in his love is to love others. By remaining in his love, we love with his love, laying down our lives. By remaining in his love, we bear the fruit of a very tangible love that is expansive enough to call everyone "friend." Everyone.
Connecting the Gospel …
… to the Second Reading: The Second Reading invites us to obey the command to love given by Jesus in the gospel. Love is the very being of God ("God is love") and since we are "begotten by God," love is our very being as well. To refuse the invitation is to refuse who we are.
… 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.
**From Saint Louis University