The first reading on Sunday, the 3rd Sunday of Easter, came from the Easter book, the Acts of the Apostles.
Peter said to the people: ‘You are Israelites, and it is the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our ancestors, who has glorified his servant Jesus, the same Jesus you handed over and then disowned in the presence of Pilate after Pilate had decided to release him. It was you who accused the Holy One, the Just One, you who demanded the reprieve of a murderer while you killed the prince of life. God, however, raised him from the dead, and to that fact we are the witnesses.
‘Now I know, brothers, that neither you nor your leaders had any idea what you were really doing; this was the way God carried out what he had foretold, when he said through all his prophets that his Christ would suffer. Now you must repent and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out.’
Down the ages Christians have often forgotten their Jewish heritage, that we are grafted onto an ancient stock, there finding life.
Times have been when Christians have deliberately rejected that heritage – though difficult to see how that can be done when that heritage so informs our celebration of Mass, our patterns of daily prayer, organisation of the week and the year, our scriptures…
How often we define ourselves over and against others, alienating them and ourselves from them.
- What group might you usefully learn more about?
- Look for their good values and consider how you might benefit from them?
Photograph of graveyard carving. Pere Lachaise, Paris. (c) 2011, Allen Morris.