Imagine yourself as part of the beautiful morning out on the lake.

Sunday, 4/10/16

If you haven’t been in a boat for sometime, why not on this bright morning, imagine yourself finding a place in the Apostles’ boat. Imagine that you have over and over helped  them in flinging out the huge net. And,after each time dragging it in empty. you have joined the others in resting. You find you need to guard your eyes from the strong glinting off the lake.

Then, piercing the morning, a voice from the shore rang out, addressing the hearty fishermen as, “Children.” And they, at the bidding from that voice, rose up, and trying the great net one more time, they brought in a haul that nearly swamping the boat.

The ever-perceptive John, told the others, “It is the Lord.” And Peter, who had been naked, pulled on a light garment, and he amazed all of you by plunging into the water, and by slapping his way to his Lord.

The rest of you in the boat made it almost as quickly. And pulling off the near bursting net, you all join in counting one hundred and fifty-three large fish. (You have never heard if there were any symbolic meaning to the figure.)

They all saw that Jesus had laid out bread loaves and fish for them on a charcoal fire. And they knew it was Jesus although they didn’t clearly recognize him. (No one has ever told us for sure why they did not recognize Jesus. Perhaps some of you know why.)

Jesus pulled Peter aside, and three times asked him if he really loved his Lord. And when Peter assured him of it three times, Jesus gave him the task of feeding his sheep and lambs.

Last Friday Pope Francis exercised that same right of feeding the sheep and lambs when he told us all to deal kindly with married people who are trying to do their best.

Some commentators are unhappy over what the Holy Father said last Friday. They complain over his asking priests to exercise mercy instead of his issuing new rules from Rome.

We are used to having the Roman Catholic Church being ninety percent Roman and only ten percent Catholic. Francis is turning that around, since conditions vary from country to country, and the Church should be able to adjust to such differences.  

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