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. May 2018 .
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Doctrines & Morals
 
 
Homilies/Reflections

*WE ARE IN DIRE NEED OF PEACE.* (Acts 3:13-15,17-19; 1 John 2:1-5; Luke 24:35-48).
By REV. FR. PAUL ANIGBORO

One phrase that features constantly during the Post-resurrection meeting of Jesus and his disciples, is "Peace be with you." Everytime he appears to them, he greets them saying, *"Shalom Aleichem" meaning "Peace be with you".* This words of Jesus is not just a wish but an assurance and a statement of fact. 
 
The word "peace be with you" is one that has found its way into the daily Eucharistic celebration as it is said many times during the mass. At the beginning of the mass, the priest greets "peace be with you", also during Gloria, it is said again. Also during the Lord's Prayer, the Lamb of God and at the dismissal. We here this words and it offers us assurance that the God of peace is truly with us. 
 
Situations around us in this country will surely remind us that we truly need peace in our world of today. There is high crime rate everywhere, governments are not consistent in carrying out their campaign promises. Families are being threatened daily because they don't even love themselves. Bosses at work are making life unbearable for those under them. All these things happening around us can really make our hearts to be troubled, and so we really need peace. 
 
The disciples in the gospel reading of today were troubled also because the Jewish people have killed Jesus and they were not safe because they felt they can come for them anytime. Hence, they had to lock the room they are staying. They are also troubled because they have been hearing people saying that Jesus who was killed had risen again, thus, they are even more disturbed asking how possible is it? Even when they saw him, they were still troubled thinking they were seeing a ghost. Jesus had to assure them that he is not a ghost but that he is truly alive. 
 
Jesus had to calm their troubled and fearful hearts with the words, "peace be with you." This greeting of Jesus can be understood in 3 forms according to Sahaya Selvam. 
 
*Firstly, peace be with you is an invitation* to the apostles to be calm. They were troubled and they were afraid. These are signs of a heart that lacks peace. Thus, with the words, peace be with you, Jesus wished them calmness and serenity. There are moments in our lives when this don't go according to plans or when things go out of control, let us apply these words of Jesus to ourselves. Jesus comes today to offer us peace and calmness. Do not be troubled, God is at work. When disturbed, read the following biblical passages:
- Psalm 46:10; "Be still and know that I am God... "
- John 14:1; "Do not let your hearts be troubled..."
- John 14:27; "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you..."
- Matthew 6:34; "Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrowwill worry about itself..."
These passages and several others offers us comfort in troubled situations of life. 
 
*Secondly, peace be with you is also a blessing.* The Hebrew word "Shaloam" means wholeness or well-being. To wish someone peace, is to wish the person wholeness and good health. Thus, The greeting of Shaloam then is an invitation from Jesus to participate in the fullness of life promised by Him. A promise of wellbeing! 
 
*Thirdly, peace be with you is also a challenge* to live that peace. The gospel text of today ends with these words: “You are witnesses to this” (Lk 24:48). We are called to be witnesses of the peace that the Risen Lord brings. As Christians, our very presence in the world is to bring peace to our neighbourhood – our homes, our places of work, our schools, and in the streets! During the Eucharistic celebration when the priest invites us to “offer each other the sign of peace,” it is only symbolic of our call to share that peace with others. It might be easy to shake hands with the one who happens to be next to us during the mass, but as I do that, we need to ask ourselves if I am willing to share my peace with that person out there, whom I find so difficult to love? 
 
The Apostles became ministers of peace and in both the 1st and 2nd reading today,  we find Peter and John proclaiming the message they have received from Jesus. We too need to share this peace every day of our lives. We are in dire need of peace in our world and Jesus comes to offer us this peace, we too must in turn bring peace to all we meet. 
 
Lord, May your peace abide in us always and may we be instruments of peace everyday of our lives. Amen. 
 
Good morning and do have a peaceful and restful Sunday. God loves you. 
 
*Peace be with you!!!*
 
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