Dear Parishioners,

I am the true vine

Perhaps for the gardeners amongst us the image from this week’s Gospel will speak more clearly. A healthy plant shows in all its branches that it is flourishing. If it is a fruit tree then that also shows in the fruit that it provides. Jesus offers us this image to help us to see that it is through him, the true vine, that we discover a fruitful and healthy life. By his death and Resurrection, Jesus provides a new way for us to live in communion with God and with each other. Sin and death are removed and replaced with grace and love. Through God’s mercy we become new creations and begin a life time’s work of being cultivated and grafted on to the true vine of the risen life that Jesus has brought amongst us. Like any gardening work this takes vigilance and care. Our relationship with God is at the centre of it and we practice this through our prayer, our religious practice and our willingness to seek God’s love and his will in our lives. Jesus promises us that if we do this then we remain part of the true vine. Like the grapes produced we are destined to be transformed into the heavenly wine that is to be part of the feast of heaven. Jesus gives his own blood to be the wine of sacrifice so that we can do this. He also warns that those who reject this way are like the dying branches that can only be pruned and discarded. Let us pray to be able to support one another to continuously dedicate ourselves to the joy of being part of God’s vineyard and love one another so that all people can come to share in this great gift.

God bless you

Fr Martin