The Way of Christ 

Jesus said to His disciples, “I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)

What does it mean that Jesus is the Way?

The disciples of Christ were first called Christians at Antioch (cf. Acts 11:26); back then and now, to be called a Christian meant that one is a follower of Christ. But even before the term “Christian” was used, the followers of Christ were referred to as people who belonged to “The Way” (cf. Acts 9:2).

Why is this term “The Way” so significant?

In the Old Testament, the Mosaic Law was “The Way” (cf. Deuteronomy 5:1-21, 32-33; 8:6, Psalm 119:1-3). When Moses gave the Law to the Israelites at Mount Horeb, he instructed the people: “Be careful, therefore, to do as the LORD, your God, has commanded you, not turning aside to the right or to the left, but following exactly the Way that the LORD, your God, commanded you that you may live and prosper, and may have long life in the land which you are to possess.” (Deuteronomy 5:32-33)

When Jesus declared Himself as “the Way,” He declared that He is the fulfillment of the Old Law. This goes together with what Jesus said at the Sermon on the Mount: “Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill.” (Matthew 5:17) In this context, “to fulfill” means “to make perfect;” therefore, Jesus is telling the crowds not to break even the least of the commandments, but unless their righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees (who were the strict followers of the Old Law), they will not enter into the kingdom of heaven. (cf. Matthew 5:19-20) It is no longer enough for one to follow the commandments of the Old Law; rather, one must follow the Way of Christ; i.e., one must follow Christ Himself – who is the Way. As a result, the Way of Christ was adopted by the followers of Christ: they thought according to Christ, they lived according to Christ, and they loved according to Christ.  

What does it mean that Jesus is the Truth and the Life?

After Jesus was arrested and sent to Pilate for trial, Jesus said, “For this I was born and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.” Pilate responded, “What is truth?” (John 18:37-38)

In Christ Jesus, the whole of God’s truth has been made manifest. (CCC 2466) The Gospel of John tells us that Jesus is “full of grace and truth” (John 1:14). Jesus Himself is the Truth; therefore, the disciple of Christ seeks to know Jesus, because to know Jesus is to know the Truth. The disciple of Christ also lives in the Truth; to live in the truth means to live in Christ; i.e., to live a life that is in conformity with the Lord’s example and teaching, and to consistently abide in Him. “If we say, we have fellowship with him, while we continue to walk in darkness, we lie and do not live according to the Truth.” (1 John 1:6, RSV) 

Finally, Jesus is the Life, because to live in Christ is to live a blessed life on earth; Jesus is also the Life, because He is our only way to everlasting life.  

The day before Mother’s Day is the feast day of Our Lady of China, the name given to Mary when she appeared to God’s beloved children in Donglu, China in 1900. This year, the Holy Name of Jesus Chinese Catholic Mission celebrates the Feast Day of Our Lady of China on Mother’s Day, May 14, 2023. Holy Mass begins at 10:30 am.

On Tuesday, May 23, 2023, on the eve of the feast day of Our Lady, Help of Christians, Chinese Catholics from all over the United States will get together via ZOOM to pray for the Church in China. Please reserve this date in your calendars. Our participation shows our commitment that we are One Church and One Body in Christ. The prayer vigil starts at 8:00pm. 

We are excited to hold a Summer Camp on the weekend of June 9-11, 2023. The venue is Heart Ridge, a Catholic Retreat and Cultural Center located in Sunset, South Carolina. It is a beautiful natural reserve with mountains, lakes, waterfalls and forest. It is about a 2.5-hour drive from Holy Name of Jesus Chinese Catholic Mission. Please register with Daisy Tsui. If you are paying by check, please make checks payable to HNOJ and write SUMMER CAMP in the memo.   

We will have our monthly faith workshop immediately after Mass this morning. The topic for today is the 3 world views of scripture. Please proceed to the Conference Room immediately after Mass. 

Immediately after Mass today, Fr. Bill will administer the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick in the main church. 

Prayer List: Lin Liehuai, Liang Chenjing, Pan Bohao, Angela Griffin, Wesley Austin, Wang Dacheng, Long Guorui, Zhang Qiang and Xu Taicheng.