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Viral Peace Plan

Peace be with you...
Acts 2:1-11; Psalm 104:1,24,29-31,34; I Corinthians 12:3-7,12-13; John 20:19-23

Sermon Week Pentecost Sunday Cycle C

Scripture Summary John 20:19

A group of artists was asked to paint a picture of peace. While there were many and varied interpretations, the winner was a painting of a small bird calmly sitting in a nest built on a slender branch overhanging Niagara Falls.

Most of us have known the feeling of being in just such a location. But usually without an accompanying sense of peace.

In the Book of Romans, we read: "… since we are justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ… and we rejoice in our hope of sharing the glory of God. More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God's Love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit" (Rom. 5:1, 2-5).

During World War I, England's Prime Minister, Ramsay MacDonald, was discussing the prospects for permanent peace with his Foreign Minister. The Foreign Minister was cynical about MacDonald's idealistic hopes for lasting peace among nations. He reminded the Prime Minister that the mere wish for peace does not bring it about. "True enough," MacDonald answered, "but neither does the mere wish for food satisfy one's hunger. Nevertheless, it can get you started toward a restaurant."

In today's Gospel Lesson, within hours of His Resurrection, Jesus reveals Himself to the disciples, who fear for their lives and are in hiding. "Jesus comes and stands among them," and says to them, "Peace be with you...Peace be with you. As the Father has sent Me, even so I send you" (Jn. 20:19,21).

How "blessed," how happy are the "peacemakers," Jesus had said to the disciples early in His ministry. Now He is dispatching them as peacemakers: "As the Father has sent Me, even so I send you." (Just as I have given My life to the cause of peace, even so I am asking you to give your life to the cause of peace. My wish for peace, my desire for peace, my hunger for peace, must be your [...]

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