I Am the Vine, You Are the Branches

05-01-2021Weekly ReflectionFr. James Aboyi, V.C.

The first and ultimate desire of every human soul is a desire for belonging to God. As we grow and mature through the different stages of our lives, the desire is manifested through our awareness of dependency on other people and groups for survival and support such as our parents, families, school, teammates, church, societies, human race, etc. However, none of the human support systems can satisfy the ultimate desire until we have a sense of belonging to God. The desire is intrinsic in us in the realization that we are only a ‘piece of the whole.’ This is a metaphysical certainty that a “piece cannot be greater than the whole.” The Catechism of the Catholic Church explains it this way:

“The desire for God is written in the human heart, because man is created by God and for God; and God never ceases to draw man to himself. Only in God will he find the truth and happiness he never stops searching for. The dignity of man rests above all on the fact that he is called to communion with God. This invitation to converse with God is addressed to man as soon as he comes into being. For if man exists it is because God has created him through love, and through love continues to hold him in existence. He cannot live fully according to truth unless he freely acknowledges that love and entrusts himself to his creator” (CCC 27).

Jesus used the image of the vine and branches to explain the nature of our need for God. He is our source of life. Cut off from God, we can do nothing on our own. It would be like removing a fish from the water. Jesus made it clear in the Gospel today that we are not only called to a deeper relationship with God, but we are also called to bear fruits for God. We must be firmly rooted in God, for no one can grow in spiritual fruitfulness unless they are rooted in God. Jesus also explains that to bear good fruits will require pruning. He assures us that we will bear much fruit if we abide in Him and allow Him to purify us. This is a great invitation by the Lord to come to Him, the source of life, to experience His healing power that will transform us to bear fruits of true peace, joy and happiness in our lives.

Thank you and remain blessed,
Fr. James