“I do not pray for these only, but also for those who believe in me through their word, that they may all be one; even as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory which you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to behold my glory which you have given me in your love for me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, the world has not known you, but I have known you; and these know that you have sent me. I made known to them your name, and I will make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.” (John 17:20-26)

Our Lord Jesus Christ prayed for us. He is praying for us. How do I know? Because his words are my guide and my hope. “I do not pray for these only, but also for those who believe in me through their word…” The word of God, the teachings of Jesus, were spread throughout the world by his disciples and his Church. And generations of Christ’s ambassadors have continued to spread the truth that is to be found in Jesus for over 2,000 years. And now is our time to spread the Gospel. But first, let us remember what Jesus asked of the Father for us. 

Jesus prayed “that they may all be one; even as you, Father, are in me, and I in you.” He prays for unity. Unity in Christ. Unity for all of his disciples. And not just unity. Jesus prays that we may have a share in the divine unity shared by the Father and the Son. Joined by the Holy Spirit, who proceeds from the love of the Father and the Son, this divine unity is the model for our hope. For we are born in relationship. Our existence is defined by, made possible by, our relationship with our Creator. 

We are born in relationship with the Blessed Trinity. We have the gift of life because the Triune Community of Love breathed life into us. Stop for a minute. Meditate upon the model of perfect love and unity given to us by the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. This unending union of love, beauty, joy and wisdom is the reason we exist. We are made by, and made for, unity and love. What will happen if we begin to live this Trinitarian vision? Jesus says that if we do then “they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” We will show Jesus to the world in how we love one another.

What an incredible prayer Jesus shares with his disciples in these words. And he shares them with us for he prays for all who “believe in me through their word.” Jesus asks “that they may be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one.” Perfectly one? Really? Amazing. Unfathomable. And yet would Jesus pray for something that is impossible? Is anything impossible for God? If we begin to live in unity with each other and the Trinity then “the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.” How will Jesus help us do this? 

He prays that “they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to behold my glory which you have given me in your love for me before the foundation of the world.” If we are “with” him we may behold his glory. We may behold the love shared by the Blessed Trinity “before the foundation of the world.” This is overwhelming. Are we overwhelmed by this amazing glorious love? Is it our inspiration and our hope? Let us pray that it may become so, more and more, every day of our lives. Every second that we breathe. For our very breath is a gift of love from the Community of Love. In gratitude we say Yes. Yes, to the Triune God. Show us your unity and love. And with your grace we may emulate your perfection.

Let our joy be grounded in reverence for the Lord and his Church, so that we may through grace respond with love to the prayer of Christ: “O righteous Father, the world has not known you, but I have known you; and these know that you have sent me. I made known to them your name, and I will make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.” Amen.