May we possess the faith of the Gospel sower, may we plant seeds of generosity, reconciliation and justice regardless of the limits of the “soil” we have to work. But may we continue to sow and nurture out of gratitude and compassion, trusting that God will bring all things to completion in God’s good time.
St. Thomas Aquinas –
Jesus undercut all exclusive definitions of family by declaring: “Whoever does the will of God is brother and sister and mother to me.” The Old Testament radicalized moral responsibility by insisting that we are our brother’s keeper. The New Testament takes that moral responsibility a quantum step further by defining our brother/sister as any and every child of God. We are all brothers and sisters to one another because we are all children of God.
St. Angela Merici –
When our beliefs are challenged, when we are confronted with what we are trying to ignore, when we discover how others are negatively affected by our actions, we go into “attack” mode. Jesus calls us to embrace the Spirit of God, the God of compassion, the God of justice that enables us to see beyond our cynicism and to put aside our skepticism in order to bring healing and hope, reconciliation and peace, to broken hearts and homes.
Third Sunday in Ordinary Time –
Whenever life seems complex take another look at the simplicity of our faith, which is by no means shallow but has great depth. It involves following Jesus, and we do that by getting to know what he taught in the gospels and how he lived with others. The rest of life will then be seen in its right perspective.
Conversion of St. Paul the Apostle –
Jesus changes persecutors into proclaimers and doubters into disciples. This is how God works throughout the Scriptures. God takes the nothingness of darkness and chaos and creates a world. God begins re-creation of that same world though the emptiness of a virgin’s womb. In the same way, the Risen Christ makes believers and messengers out of faithless people. We give thanks that, even in our faithlessness, Christ is at work in us to make us faithful.
St. Francis de Sales –
The work of carrying the gospel is not reserved for the elite few, for the deep thinkers alone, or for the skilled activists. We are all called by Christ to drive out every evil force from our poor, afflicted world. All are called to heal the wounds inflicted by careless society; all are called to point the way to the one who is “the way, the truth, and the life.”
St. Vincent and St. Marianne Cope –
Like Jesus we are faced with times of peace and times of conflict; times of action and times of silence. Fr. George Maloney writes: “If you wish to become a contemplative, a listener, a doer of God’s Word, you must learn to encounter God in deep silence and solitude. As you meet God in the quiet of God’s loving presence, you will learn how to live more consciously aware of God’s presence in your hours of busy activities throughout the day.”
Day of Prayer for Legal Protection of Unborn Children –
Jesus defied regulations that made the letter of the law more important than its spirit. Jesus is calling us to live his message. As we proceed deeper into the life of Jesus, the challenges become greater. The little helpless baby in the manger which we adored a few weeks ago is now challenging us to live his life. Our life of faith and prayer has to reach out into the world.
St. Agnes –
If the performance of our religion keeps us from helping someone in need, then our religion is not religion at all. It might be good for all of us to examine our conscience. There are some who are sticklers and protectors of all rules and regulations to the point of snuffing out life and creativity in others. We are all answerable for the times we put law, rule, and regulation over people. Be careful not to be too critical of the Pharisees.
Saints Fabian and Sebastian –
It isn’t easy to keep your balance amidst change. There is a tendency to go to extremes, to overreact. Some go too far left, some go too far right assuming that they each have all the truth and all the answers in their foxholes. An idea is not necessarily true just because it is new but neither is it true because it is old. Jesus certainly did not disdain the past but he did refuse to be bound by traditions. His wholehearted commitment was to the truth.