COR THOUGHTS 253: Remain in Me as I Remain in You

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In this Sunday’s Gospel, Jesus draws the analogy of the vine and the branches. We are the branches that must remain in the Christ-vine if we are to have life in us and bear fruit. “Remain in me.” Jesus uses that phrase five times in just seven verses. “Remain in me, as I remain in you.” The preposition “in” is a profoundly intimate word. We might not give it much thought at first, but it’s worth deep and prayerful consideration: “Remain in me, as I remain in you.” There is no more intimate communion than being in another person. And it’s not just poetry. Every one of us starts life in another human being – our mother. And each of us, in God’s holy design, is conceived as the fruit of our father being in our mother. This is the kind of intimacy into which Jesus invites us: spousal intimacy. As St. John Paul II wrote, “The Eucharist is the sacrament … of the Bridegroom and of the Bride.” It is where we, the Church, the Bride, literally receive Christ in us as : “Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him” (Jn 6:56). Lord Jesus, open our hearts