It is 16th May 2018. The readings are from Acts 20:28-38; and the Gospel from John 17:11-19. In life we all have to say a few words summarising what we have been standing for before we leave a place, a relationship or an institution. Some of the words are words of caution, or encouragement or hope filled message or a deep prayer of a loving and dedicated heart. The farewell speech of Paul and the farewell prayer of Jesus is continued in today’s readings. The first reading St. Paul’s emotional farewell speech to the elders of the Ephesian is that of a warning to face any trials for the sake of Christ and the Church and wishing God’s protection on them. He gives the credibility to the Holy Spirit who chose them to serve the Church as leaders. We are at the beck and call of God’s service. He encouraged the leaders to be the givers not the ones to receive. He too wanted the leaders to work hard against the evil that surrounds the church. God chooses us to shepherd the flock that is entrusted to us whether in a family, the church or in the corporate world. It is God who called us to lead. Let us lead by the examples of Christ in our lives. Without the personal and intimate union with Christ, we cannot protect and provide the Church. “In all this I have given you an example that by such work we must support the weak, remembering the words of the Lord Jesus, for he himself said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts.20:35). Let us not be tired of giving. Let us not find lame excuses to avoid giving. If we do so, we are just cheating ourselves. God is pleased with the cheerful givers but not with the greedy receivers. The responsorial Psalm praises, “Kingdoms of the earth, sing to God.” (Ps.67:33). In the Gospel, Jesus prays for his followers and disciples cautioning them to be on guard about the world and its vicious and pervasive circle of selfishness and inviting them to consecrate themselves in truth. Our consecration in truth comes in our daily demonstration of unadvertised charitable works known to God alone. We are all sent into the world to continue and complete the mission of love, mercy and forgiveness. “As you have sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify myself, so that they also may be sanctified in truth.” (Jn.17:19). May you have a good day. God bless you.