“Your friends make known, O Lord, the glorious splendor of your kingdom” (Psalm 145).
This was no easy task as we hear in our First Reading from the Acts of the Apostles. To be a friend of God, is to be stoned, to be rejected, to go against the grain of society in order to preach Christ. Yet, the apostles knew that this is what it meant to follow Jesus and they also knew that each community needed a presbyter, so they fasted and prayed to choose their priests.
Today, the Church also remembers Saint Pius V (1504-1572) who was a Dominican theologian. His primary work was to implement the reforms of the Council of Trent. He reformed seminarians, published a new Missal, and revised the Catechism and the Breviary. Pius V was also responsible for the Pope’s garments being white to this day due to his white habit as a Dominican Friar.
Saint Paul carried out his friendship with Christ as he was stoned and lived and continued to encouraged the young Church in his time. Saint Pius V carried out his friendship with Christ as he reformed the Church by reviving the institution and its liturgical prayer life.
As we carry out our friendship with the Risen Christ in our own day, we must recall his message from today’s Gospel. Today’s pericope is a continuation from Jesus‘ farewell discourse in the Gospel of John. He says, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.” Peace is not the absence of war. Rather, it is shalom. Shalom is more than a salutation. It is a command to being made complete and whole. We are complete and whole when we live our life in Christ.
As friends of Jesus Christ in the 21st Century, we will endure many hardships in our own unique ways as Paul and Pius V encountered. Yet, as we bear our crosses and live in the life of Jesus, we are made whole, we are made complete as the Spirit of God breaths on us.
We are Your friends, O Lord. Help us make known the glory of your kingdom.