This afternoon, at the Lord’s Supper Mass, celebrated without meeting with the faithful due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Bishop of Funchal left a message of “love” and “altruism”.
“Having loved his people who were in the world, he loved them to the end”, began by saying Nuno Brás Martins, in the homily of this Holy Thursday, evoking the account of the Last Supper of St. John.
“For St. John, love as it summarizes the whole life of Jesus”, but it is “love until the end”, emphasizes the bishop.
This means that “Jesus loved his disciples from the moment he was born until his death. His whole life was an act of love. It was for love that the Word became flesh. It was for love that he chose the disciples. It was for love that he changed the water into wine; who healed the blind; who raised Lazarus; who celebrated the Last Supper with his people and washed their feet; and, finally, it was for love that he died on the cross and was resurrected “, explains D. Nuno Brás, inviting us to” go further “.
“’Until the end’ also means: ‘completely’, without any fault, giving your whole life to those you love, without reserving anything for yourself, without any hint of selfishness”, he exhorts, at a time when we are asked precisely that we think not only about our safety, but also that of others.
“No one has greater love than the one who gives his life for his friends”, underlines the bishop, quoting S. João.
We are also “friends” and “disciples” of Jesus, recalls Nuno Brás Martins, going on to explain the importance of the Last Supper in this Easter season.
“The Lord’s disciples are in the world. We are in the middle of the world. We live in it. It is in this ‘world of men’ that we work; it is in him and with him that we become ‘human’. It is this world that will receive the love that flows from the Eucharist. It is he who will be transformed by Christians, based on this love received and lived around the table that Jesus had for our food ”.
“The Eucharist is our food, the food of life. And, therefore, we do not see the time when, once again, we can celebrate it all, already without the media as intermediaries, but in person, with each other. It is also a question of survival ”, says the bishop, in a note of hope that we will overcome the current situation of social isolation imposed by the pandemic.
“While this is not possible and we are obliged to this’ Eucharistic fast ‘, let us celebrate the Lord’s Passover in the certainty that He is with us and wants us with Him.’ Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them end ‘, he concludes.