Connect to Christ

Fr. Oscar Mendez, OFM

From Our Pastor

The readings for this Sunday speak to us about the importance of remaining connected to Christ, the true vine, and bearing fruit in our lives as his disciples. In the Gospel, Jesus uses the example of the vine and the branches to describe our relationship with Him. He is the true vine, and we are the branches. If we remain connected to Him, we can bear much fruit and glorify the Father. This is the only way we can bear fruit abundantly.

St. Francis at Prayer

Let us reflect this week on whether we are truly connected to Christ daily. Are we bearing fruit in our words and actions as His disciples? Are we abiding in His love and keeping His commandments out of genuine love for him and others?

Jesus tells us how important it is for us to be united with Him, for he is the life-sustaining vine that provides the nutrients for the branches(us) so that we can produce the fruit that God expects.

Once, I went to a vineyard and asked for information on how to take care of the vine. I was informed that a young vine is not allowed to fruit for the first three years, and each year is cut drastically back to develop and conserve its life and energy. When mature, it is pruned in December and January. It bears two kinds of branches, one that bears fruit and one that does not, and the branches that do not bear fruit are drastically pruned back so that they will not drain away any of the plant’s strength. The vine cannot produce a good crop without being drastically pruned.

Jesus makes us aware that some of us may bear fruit while others are useless because they bear no fruit. We may become withered and useless branches when we refuse to listen to Jesus. Let our practice, words, and actions reflect that we are attached to the true vine. To bear fruit and grow spiritually, we must stay connected to Christ through prayer, reading the Scripture, partaking in the Sacraments, and cultivating a personal relationship with Jesus.

Peace and good, Friar Oscar Mendez, OFM

(En Español)

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