Have courage to make the right decisions There was a divorce which many people had talked about in Brockton, Massachu- setts, USA. On the 6th March 1997 a married couple, Dana Raymond and Jeanne Ardizoni went to a family court to file for their divorce, the issue which caused controversy was that they have two children (both with the same disability) and neither parent wanted to take custody of their children. Finally, the court decided to put the children into an orphanage. When the children were taken away, people heard their cries and calling out to their par- ents, but they both showed no emotion. They were indifferent to their children’s cry because they didn’t want the children to be their burden and so leaving the children behind was a choice which they had made. In today’s first reading, the Israelites were summoned to make a decision of whether serving the one God, or pagan gods. Based on their experience of God they answered: “We have no intention of deserting the Lord and serving other gods!....We too will serve the Lord, for he is our God.” Similarly, the Gospel tells us that there was a large crowd of people who followed Jesus because he had given them plenty of bread, and they felt satisfied. Now Je- sus was no longer giving them the physical bread but talked about himself a s the bread of life:”unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you.” This was not what they expected when they followed Jesus, so they started to leave Him, including many of his disciples. Jesus said to the Twelve, “what about you, do you want to go away too?” Simon Peter on behalf of his friends, proclaims “Lord, who shall we go to? You have the message of eternal life, and we believe.” When I reflect on this Gospel of St John, I thought how true it is today that many peo- ple stay away from the church simply because they are not satisfied. Following Jesus is not a matter of feeling but a serious decision and a challenge which we have to face with eve- ryday living. It is a choice which we make whether to turn away from Him or to walk with Him on the path that leads to joy, peace and eternal life. May our faith be deepened so that we have the courage to make the right decision.
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