Jesus was praying alone ….
You have often prayed, Lord, alone on the mountain or at night. You had said : When you want to pray, go into your room and direct your prayer to your Father, Who is in the secret place (Matt. 6:6). You give the example of this silent, hidden prayer. …. You continue it now in the Eucharist…. With the Apostles I ask You : Lord, teach us to pray (Lk.11:1).
Who do the crowds say that I am?
During Your prayers, You have increased light and strength to fulfil Your mission which the Father has entrusted to You, this mission which will lead You to the very end of love, to suffering and death to draw us into Your resurrection. But why then this question to Your apostles, as if You were thinking of You popularity rating in a survey of the crowd? It is not out of curiosity, because You know well what is in the heart of each person; but You want to focus the attention of Your disciples on peoples’ ignorance, on their need for enlightenment.
Who do you say that I am?
Here is the important question! The disciples themselves must no harbour any false ideas about You. They must be in the truth to live it profoundly in the first place, before transmitting it to others. It’s not about a purely intellectual knowledge… You await a response which compels them to follow You along the same path, the path of concrete love which goes “to the end”: Whoever comes after Me, must renounce himself ….
Who am I to You?
Once more, You ask them, Lord …. Help me to give a true response, a response often renewed … For this, draw me close: may I know how to join You often in prayer, to increase there, light and strength, to allow the Spirit to put into my heart the love which the Father awaits from me.