Michael J. Graham, S.J.
(This is the text from Father Graham’s final homily to students this year, Sunday, April 27, 10:00 p.m.)
Tonight’s Gospel points very obviously ahead, past the Ascension next Sunday to Pentecost on the following one, to the gift of the Paraclete—the Advocate, the Counselor, the One who will open the disciples’ eyes and hearts to the full meaning of their Lord and friend. That Paraclete will usher them into the inner life of Jesus and the Father, and raises as well a whole host of questions for you and me tonight, all these long centuries post-Pentecost. Is that Paraclete with us still, now? If so, where, how and to what purpose? How might we recognize Him, you and I, here and now, in our midst, today? Important questions one and all, and we’ll wind our way back to them eventually. Trust me.
But first things first. What I really want to know is: What did you think of the Pope? Did you have much of a chance to follow his trip in the papers or on TV or through the Internet? Maybe even talk a little bit about his visit or him with your parents? There certainly were some riveting and remarkable moments, weren’t there, moments not easily forgotten—that meeting with the sexual abuse survivors, for example, or his visit to Ground Zero in New York. There were other, more festive and photogenic events, but those were the two that really got me because, here in the United States, both cut so deep, deeper by far than any Mass in any baseball stadium or reception with religious leaders ever could.
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