THE SERVANT GENERAL
THE NEW EVANGELIZATION
AS JESUS RELATED TO THE FATHER
Today’s gospel: John 17:20-26
The New Evangelization is all about going back to the way
God designed evangelization to be. This was manifested on
Pentecost, with the descent of the Holy Spirit upon Christ’s
disciples, and in how the early Church carried out her mission.
But it was Jesus who showed the way, in his final prayer before
his arrest and passion. Jesus pointed to his relationship
with the Father, and thus showed us the way we are to go.
Just as Jesus related to the Father, so are we to relate to
Jesus. Jesus knew the Father, lived the Father, shared the
Father. We in turn are to meet and know Christ, to live Christ,
and to share Christ.
knew the Father. “Righteous Father, the world does not
know you, but I know you” (Jn 17:25a). Now Jesus has
made God known to us. Jesus has revealed the Father, and in
so doing has revealed the Son. God sent His own Son to redeem
us. Because of Jesus’ words and works, “they know
that you sent me.” (Jn 17:25b). To meet and know Jesus
is to meet and know the Father, “as we are one.”
(Jn 17:22c). We are to meet Christ.
lived the life of the Father. Jesus avers, “you, Father,
are in me and I in you” (Jn 17:21b). Jesus reflects
the very glory of God. “And I have given them the glory
you gave me” (Jn 17:22a). We too are to live the life
of God. Our light too is to shine forth. Disciples are to
live Christ, “that they also may be in us” (Jn
17:21c). To live Christ is to be holy and to strive for perfection.
This happens as we put on Christ, as Jesus says, “I
in them and you in me, that they may be brought to perfection”
(Jn 17:23a). Jesus gave his life out of love for us. God is
love, and the greatest Christian virtue is love. To live Christ
is to manifest and share the Father’s love, and thus
will Christ himself live in us, as Jesus says, “that
the love with which you loved me may be in them and I in them.”
(Jn 17:26c). We are to live Christ.
shared the Father. He told the world of the Father’s
love, “that you loved them even as you loved me.”
(Jn 17:23c). “I have made known to them you name”
(Jn 17:26a). Now Jesus continues to make God known, through
us as his instruments, as we share Christ. In this challenging
work, we are assured that this is Jesus’ own continuing
work, as he says, “I will make it known” (Jn 17:26b).
When we share Christ through the work of evangelization, then
Jesus’ prayer will come to pass, as he said, “I
pray not only for them, but also for those who will believe
in me through their word” (Jn 17:20). We are to share
has gone on ahead to heaven. That too is our destination.
Jesus gave his life so that many more would be restored to
the Father. Let us do our share in the work of the New Evangelization.
Then we can help fulfill another prayer, and wish, of Jesus.
“I wish that where I am they also may be with me, that
they may see my glory that you gave me” (Jn 17:24b).