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Four accounts of the apparitions

St. John’s Gospel has four accounts of the apparitions of the risen Lord. Jesus appeared to Mary Magdalene, then to the ten disciples in the closed room, he appeared to Thomas after eight days and finally in today’s gospel passage he appears to the seven disciples who had gone fishing.

Four accounts of the apparitions

By Fr. Robert D’Souza
St. John’s Gospel has four accounts of the apparitions of the risen Lord. Jesus appeared to Mary Magdalene, then to the ten disciples in the closed room, he appeared to Thomas after eight days and finally in today’s gospel passage he appears to the seven disciples who had gone fishing.

This action of fishing shows they have returned to their earlier profession. But Jesus’ appearance invites them to return to their vocation. It is the beloved disciple who recognizes Jesus.

Here again it is a deep love for the Master that the disciples can feel the vibrations of his presence. Peter wraps a cloak around his waist and jumps into the sea because he was naked which means he was ashamed of meeting the Lord whom he had denied publicly.

This escapism does not help him. Jesus tells the disciples to bring some fish that they have just caught. It is Peter who drags the net to the shore which means now he is ready to lead the Church.

He shares the breakfast with Jesus which means he has become one with Jesus again. In the future he will restore his denial with his love for Jesus, and Jesus will appoint him the shepherd of his flock.

In what way do I see a progress in my life as far as my relationship with Jesus is concerned?

(A prolific writer Fr. Dr. Robert Baptist D’souza has been a perspicacious translator for years including the translation of the voluminous Catechism of the Catholic Church. He translated the 16 sticker books of the Living in Faith to Marathi and is busy translating the Bible into the same language. He belongs to the diocese of Vasai and is the director of the pastoral centre.)

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