Fr Paul reads from the Gospel of John (21: 1-14) in which Jesus shows himself again to the disciples on the shore of the Sea of Tiberius after they had spent the night, unsuccessfully, fishing.Fr Paul says this is one of his favourite passages in the scriptures with image of Jesus and the disciples by the sea enjoying a freshly cooked fish breakfast. This Gospel brings an end to the Gospel of John, and it presents a lovely scene of the disciples being re-united with their Risen Lord. It also shows an extraordinary link to Luke’s version of the Call of the Disciples: here you have the same sort of episode, the unsuccessful fishing, then success happens when Jesus’ commands to throw the net, and then there is the commission to proclaim the Gospel. As in so many encounters with the Risen Christ, he is an awesome figure, the same person but mysteriously changed so again in this Gospel we hear that the disciples have difficulty recognising him. While Matthew’s Gospel concludes with a promise that the Risen Christ will be always with his Church, this Gospel paints Christ nourishing the Church: Jesus feeds his followers at this picnic breakfast. One mystery in this Gospel is why the writer mentions that there was exactly 153 fish? Today, Fr Paul put this Gospel challenge to us – Make some time today to imagine you are sitting with Jesus by the fire by the sea…What would you talk about with the risen Lord?
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