Acts 11:1-18
John 10:1-10


“I have come that you may have life and have it to the full”. (Jn10:10)

I am sure I am not alone in thinking this is one of the best quotes Jesus has given us. None of us wants to live without love, joy, and fulfilment. The need to live life to the full drives us forward through the most difficult circumstances.

On this day, I am particularly conscious of this need to live life to the full. Thirty-six years ago, today, my younger sister gave birth to twins, a girl, and a boy. She almost died in the process and spent days in intensive care before eventually making a full recovery. Ten days later, we were in the same position with our little girl, when her bowel perforated and the doctors gave her little chance of pulling through. I had the dubious honour of baptising the twins with a tearful family gathered around the hospital bed. I was able to accompany her to the Children’s Hospital and wait with her until she was strong enough for surgery. Today, thirty-six years later, she heads up a wonderful team of cardiac nurses, giving others a much-needed chance at life and she lives life to the full.

So often, we can give in to the temptation to complain, to reject anything that isn’t perfect or wish for something better than we have.

Today is gift. We need to live it to the full, in love, joy, and generosity and be the ‘gate’ that allows others to share this wonderful life.

Margaret Bentley is a Salesian Sister and is currently the Academic Manager at the English Language Studies for Pastoral Ministry (ELSPM) begun by the Passionists in 2014 to enable their students to learn English before continuing to the Novitiate or theological studies.