|c15th Maitre de Rohan, Pentecost|
Perhaps that is one of the reasons why so few today take seriously the idea of the divine institution of the Church and its ongoing mission to convert the world to Christ....
Readings for the day
In the older form, today's readings at Mass are Acts 10:34, 42-48 (In those days, Peter, opening his mouth, said: Men, brethren, the Lord commanded us to preach to the people and testify....) and John 3:16-21 (God so loved the world, as to give us his only-begotten son...).
From traditional readings for Matins, St Augustine's take on the Gospel:
"The Physician comes to do all he can towards the healing of the sick. And the sick person who will not attend to the advice of the Physician brings on his own death. This Physician is come, as a Saviour, to the world. Why is he called the Saviour of the world, except that he came, not to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved? Have you no desire to be saved through him? by your own act you are condemned. Any why do I say, you are condemned? Because it is written: He that believes in him is not condemned. What then do you expect will be said to him that does not believe? This shall be said: He is condemned. Indeed he has already said more than that, to wit: He that believes not is condemned already. Though the condemnation be not yet openly pronounced, it has nonetheless already taken place.
The Lord knows them that are his. He knows them that will continue unto the crown, and likewise he knows them that will continue unto the fire. He knows the wheat on his threshing floor, and the chaff. He knows the field (which is the world) with its good grain, and its tares. He that believes not is condemned already. Why? Because he has not believed in the Name of the only-begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation: That light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. Whose deeds, my brethren, doth the Lord find to be good? None. He finds the works of all men to be in themselves bad. How then do we hear that some there be who do the truth, and come to the light? For it is written : He that does truth, comes to the light.
But he said: Men loved darkness rather than light. And here he makes the great point of difference between such as love darkness, and such as come to the light. There are many who have loved their sins. Also there be many who have confessed their sins. He that confesses, thereby denounces his sin, and is working already with God. God denounces your sins, and if you denounce them likewise, then you join yourself with God in his act. The man and the sinner are, as it were, two different things. God made the man; man made the sinner. Destroy what you have worked in yourself, and God will save what he has already made. You are required to hate in yourself your own works, and to love God's work. When your own works begin to displease you, then is it that you begin to do well, because you denounce your own evil works. The first thing to do, if thou would do good works, is to acknowledge your evil ones.
And from today's Mass, the Offertory: