Today’s readings are here.
“I in them and you in me, that they may be brought to perfection as one, that the world may know that you sent me, and that you loved them even as you loved me.”
There is a striking image Jesus uses to explain to us how faith recreates our relationship with God. Jesus says that he is present in us, in the depths of our hearts. But his presence in us includes implicitly the fact that the Father is in the depths of his heart. It seems like a kind of spiritual matryoshka in which the more we dig, the more we reach God, and heaven itself.
Jesus is telling each of us that we have heaven within, and that if we are looking for God we must look in his heart, and to find his heart we must look in our own. Too often we think that the way that leads to heaven is a path in space, in the clouds. But the way to heaven has a sacred gateway, which is our interiority.
Heaven does not coincide with our inner world, but the latter is, so to speak, its antechamber. Those who do not “return to themselves” cannot even truly meet God. This is why evil always wants us to live outside ourselves, alienated, focused on things outside ourselves, distracted, exasperated, absorbed in a thousand problems. Praying means crossing the threshold of our heart and meeting Christ, and crossing another threshold in Christ to meet the Father Himself. And all this, however, is possible only because the Holy Spirit makes it possible.
Father Luigi Maria Epicoco is a priest of the Aquila Diocese of Italy and teaches Philosophy at the Pontifical Lateran University and at the ISSR ‘Fides et ratio,’ Aquila. He dedicates himself to preaching, especially for the formation of laity and religious, giving conferences, retreats and days of recollection. He has authored numerous books and articles. Since 2021, he has served as the Ecclesiastical Assistant in the Vatican Dicastery for Communication and columnist for the Vatican’s daily newspaper L’Osservatore Romano.
Aleteia is proud to offer this commentary on the readings for daily Mass, in collaboration with Fr. Epicoco.