The daily Gospel reading from the Mass for Friday of the Octave of Easter is John 21:1-14.

Following Christ’s appearance after the Resurrection to the Apostles in Jerusalem to establish that He has indeed risen, the Apostles travel back their homes in Galilee, anticipating that they will meet Christ again as promised (Mark 14:28). Seven disciples (Peter, John, James, Nathaniel, Thomas, two others), perhaps driven by the need to eat, are led by Peter to fish in the Sea of Galilee. Despite being seasoned fishermen, the disciples fish all night but catch no fish.

After a night of failure, Christ comes with the dawn to reveal Himself. As the disciples draw near the shore, Christ, His identity and voice mysteriously disguised, addresses the grown men as “Children”, a strange greeting from a stranger. Knowing the disciples have caught nothing, Christ directs them to cast their net on the other side of the boat. Despite the absurdity of the request, the disciples obey and are immediately given a catch of fish too heavy for seven men to draw in. Suddenly, John understands they have been given a miraculous catch and tells Peter that the stranger is “the Lord.” Peter, trusting John, immediately dresses to be presentable to Christ, dives in the water and swims the 100 yards to the shore. The other disciples follow in the boat, dragging the full nets ashore.

Recalling the feeding of the 5000 by multiplying fish and bread (John 6:1-14) by the Sea of Galilee, Christ feeds the disciples a breakfast with the miraculous catch of fish and with bread. Christ’s glorified risen Body is mysterious; the disciples are hesitant about His identity but are convinced He is the Lord. Similar to the Feeding of the 5000 and the Last Supper, Christ feeds the disciples a miraculous meal.

Awed by Jesus ChristSon of God, Christ mysteriously appears, can disguise His appearance and performs miracles of nature. Divine Priest, Christ establishes and builds on symbolic actions which confirm that He is Lord. Divine King, Christ calls, directs and provides for His men.

Being a Heroic Catholic Man

1)  Be awed by Christ’s mysterious glorified Body; He has the ability to appear and disappear, to disguise His identity and voice and yet still consumes earthly food.

2) Christ establishes Peter to lead His Church and the disciples follow Peter. During Easter, review Peter’s role as the first pope and the structure of the Church (CCC 880-887) and pray for Christ to guide the current pope.

3)  After failing in the dark, Christ, the light of the world, calls to His “children” to cast their nets again, giving them a miraculous catch.  During Easter, reassert your identity as an adopted son of God (CCC 1, 52, 270, 294, 422, 654, 1709, 2009)  and pray that Christ guide to live out your identity as a Catholic man.

Spiritual Practices – Include in Today’s Prayers

Sacred Mystery of Rosary – The Sorrowful Mysteries

Daily Devotion – The Passion and Death of our Lord Jesus Christ

Virtue of the Day – Faith

Corporal Work of Mercy – To visit the sick

Spiritual Work of Mercy – To forgive all injuries