Friday 22nd week of OT Vendredi 22e semaine du TO

“New wine must be put in fresh skins.”
Sunday 26 June 2016

1 Co.4,1-5 Ps.36 Lk.5,33-39

Friday of 22nd week, even numbered year

"One day they said to Jesus’ John’s disciples are always fasting and saying prayers, and the disciples of the Pharisees, too, but yours go on eating and drinking’.

Jesus replied ’Surely you can’t make the bridegroom’s attendants fast while the bridegroom is still with them? But the time will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them; then, in those days, they will fast."

Jesus’ profound teaching has very important consequences for our faith. The spirit that Jess brings is different from the popular opinion which doesn’t seem to be satisfactory , as Jesus sees things.

Fasting is the translation of the absence of the beloved one. It is when the Bridegroom, who is Jesus Himself, will be taken away from the disciples, by his Passion and burial, and then by his Ascension close to the Father, that we announce what true fasting is.

This is the time the Church is going through when Jesus is Invisible and when we are awaiting his return. We are waiting for this Encounter where he manifests himself to us and when one day we can see him face to face.

It is during this time when Jesus is absent that fasting takes its place and that it has its meaning. Jesus gives his one and only reason for the practice of fasting : ’The companions of the Bridegroom will fast when the Bridegroom will be taken away from them.’

We can already see how the Love of God for his chosen people is presented as the Love of the Bridegroom for the bride. This analogy expresses the ’sponsal’ quality, the divine character of God’s Love : ’Your Creator is your Bridegroom’ said Isaiah. It is a question of the Love of God expressed in the redemption accomplished by Christ Jesus.

“Jesus told them a parable ’No one tears a piece from anew cloak to put it on an old cloak; otherwise, not only will the new one be torn, but the piece taken from the new will not match the old.”

Jesus makes use of two parable that manifest the reality of the new spirit he brings. It is difficult to enter into the New Love Jesus comes to bring us. It is not to everyone’s taste, who often ignore its very existence and doesn’t see the difference between that and the old wine. Those who are badly disposed to welcome this new wine from Jesus, do not recognise the sensitive parts of their being, that part which is something much deeper, which is desire, God’s expectations.

We need to hollow out this desire of the Heart of Jesus and Mary within us. In our body and soul a deep correspondence with the Infinite Love of God. The mystery of the wedding feast of the Lamb is announced.

Jesus invites us to join Him on the level of the secret part of our human person. This is a place where there is no limits apart from those of Love, here what counts is the heart.

We may be paralysed in all kinds of ways, be limited on all sides, the spiritual heart will never be limited. On the contrary, the heart can develop in a surprising way in adversity. The Cross of Jesus is announced here, it is the place of greatest Love. God is the Beloved and we are waiting for His Return.

" And nobody puts new wine in old wine skins ; otherwise, the new wine will burst the skins and run to waste, and the skins will be ruined. No; new wine must be put in fresh skins. And nobody who has been drinking old wine wants new. ’The old is good’ he says.

Fasting ought to be first of all for us to be aware of Christ Jesus’ absence. It means to suffer from this impossibility on earth, for us, to be able to embrace him, to see him, to contemplate him with our eyes of flesh.

To live out of faith is an extraordinary source of wealth, rich, lived out at night, obscure. This faith sends us to desire, expectation, hope of vision, to his return.

This lack is deep and is deeply felt when Christ Jesus is really our Bridegroom. The love that links us to Him is a love that takes hold of us in the deepest part of our being.

Jesus proclaims to be the Bridegroom of our being, the Bridegroom of humanity, the Bridegroom of each one of us.There is such a deep intimacy between Him and ourselves that it brings up in us such a deep, intense intimacy, that it brings up a desire in us, expectation, wonder. This New Love can only be in someone who has been renewed! Our heart resounds

constantly this desire of Christ Jesus in our minds and hearts. This is why Jesus speaks about new wine skins. If our heart is in a state of desire, in a state of call, expectation, it is normal that our body also participates in this expectation, this emptiness, this aspiration.

’To be delivered’ means to become a disinterested gift in the most radical and entire way : ’There is no greater Love.’

We ask for the grace to remain in this Love of God, to live at the rhythm of this love and to remain there.