Determining Who We Are...
The Risen Lord has twice appeared to the Apostles before, but they still didn’t get it. They think it is time to move on and get back to their usual work of fishing. In today’s Gospel they went fishing the whole night but caught nothing. But when Jesus the Risen Lord came to them and instructed them what to do, they had a bountiful catch. Without Jesus they experienced failure, but with Jesus they succeeded. The place we give God in our lives will determine who we are. Jesus said in John 15:5, “without me you can do nothing.”
With Jesus’ Resurrection, life for the Apostles was never the same. Peter who denied the Lord three times was reinstalled as the leader of the Church; “Do you love me?... Feed my Sheep.” After receiving the Holy Spirit, they became courageous and joyfully proclaimed the Good News as we hear from the Acts of the Apostles, even to the extent of suffering martyrdom.
By the grace of God, 25 years ago, on May 5th, 1994, I was ordained a priest in India. I belong to the Religious Congregation of the Missionaries of St. Francis de Sales (Fransalians). Looking back to my priestly ministry I find myself constantly being guided by the Lord through various challenging situations in India, in the Philippines and now here in the United States. I am deeply grateful to God, to my Religious Order (MSFS) and to every local Church where I served. I am so blessed to serve as the Pastor of St. John Neumann Parish. You have made me feel accepted and loved in spite of my limitations. While thanking God for the gift of everyone of you, I request your prayers that I may continue to be faithful to my priestly ministry.
Fr. Sunny Punnakuziyil, MSFS