• Naomi Mannino

SATURDAY BEFORE EPIPHANY JANUARY 5, 2019


Readings of the Day:

A reading from the holy Gospel of Jn 1:43-51

Jesus decided to go to Galilee, and he found Philip. And Jesus said to him, "Follow me." Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the town of Andrew and Peter. Philip found Nathanael and told him, "We have found the one about whom Moses wrote in the law, and also the prophets, Jesus, son of Joseph, from Nazareth." But Nathanael said to him, "Can anything good come from Nazareth?" Philip said to him, "Come and see." Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said of him, "Here is a true child of Israel. There is no duplicity in him." Nathanael said to him, "How do you know me?" Jesus answered and said to him, "Before Philip called you, I saw you under the fig tree." Nathanael answered him, "Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel." Jesus answered and said to him, "Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than this." And he said to him, "Amen, amen, I say to you, you will see the sky opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man."

REFLECTION;

“Philip found Nathanael and told him, "We have found the one about whom Moses wrote in the law, and also the prophets, Jesus, son of Joseph, from Nazareth." But Nathanael said to him, "Can anything good come from Nazareth?" Philip said to him, "Come and see."

Skepticism and faith. We all have to question our beliefs and Nathanael is no exception. He had to see for himself. Who is Jesus of Nazareth? Is He the Son of God, the King of Israel? Jesus gathered his disciples and promised great things. “And he said to him, "Amen, amen, I say to you, you will see the sky opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”

As children, we are very innocent and gullible, readily believing in the faith our parents taught us. As we age, our minds question the reality of the incredible stories. How could it be true when we have learned so much about the world? As adults, these childhood stories don’t seem to be real. We need reassurance like Nathanael and want proof .

I found my proof in the Word of God, the Bible. I read it to understand my Creator and the goodness He has to offer. I found it in the Mass, the most beautiful prayer I have ever witnessed and prayed. I found it in defending the truth of the real existence of Jesus in the Eucharist.

In John 6:66-67 Jesus asks his disciples if they will abandon him since he told them they had to eat, as in manually chew, his body to have eternal life. The twelve remained with Jesus because they understood the power of Jesus’s teachings. - They witnessed the result of His Word: people healed, evil spirits fled, hearts were changed. Jesus could make all things whole again. They understood the power of the word of Jesus. Yet, they didn’t necessarily understand how it would come to be. But their faith in the Word of God held firm.

As Jesus invited his disciples to follow him. Philip, in turn, invites Nathanael, “Come and see.” Are we excited enough about our salvation to turn to another and invite them to Mass? A person has to see for himself the power of the Word and the sound of Jesus’s sacrificial love whispering to their hearts. It is the only way they “…will see the sky opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man."


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