Saint Francis knew, it seems, the inner power God invested in the words that sprang up spontaneously from his gratitude for the assurance of God's kingdom. Then when Father Francis came to die, he sang the final stanzas of his Canticle, knowing full well the words would give him hope and courage to make the passage into the kingdom that already dwelled within him, a mirror of the kingdom he was about to return to.
Praised be you, my Lord, through our Sister
Bodily Death from whom
no one living can escape.
Woe to those who die in mortal sin!
Blessed are those whom Sister Death
will find in your most holy will,
for the second death
can do them no harm.
Praise and bless my Lord, thank him
and serve him humbly
—from Murray Bodo, OFM, author of the book Francis and Jesus
✞"There is still time for endurance, time for patience, time for healing, time for change. Have you slipped? Rise up. Have you sinned? Cease. Do not stand among sinners, but leap aside." — St. Basil the Great
✞ MEDITATION OF THE DAY "A man must go through a long and great conflict in himself before he can learn fully to overcome himself, and to draw his whole affection towards God. When a man stands upon himself he is easily drawn aside after human comforts. But a true lover of Christ, and a diligent pursuer of virtue, does not hunt after comforts, nor seek such sensible sweetnesses, but is rather willing to bear strong trials and hard labors for Christ." — Thomas a' Kempis, p. 64 AN EXCERPT FROM Imitation of Christ
✞ VERSE OF THE DAY "Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, 'For your sake we are being killed all day long; we are accounted as sheep to be slaughtered.' No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us." Romans 8:35-37
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Saint Theodora Guérin
(October 2, 1798 – May 14, 1856)
Saint Theodora Guérin's Story
Trust in God's Providence enabled Mother Theodore to leave her homeland, sail halfway around the world, and found a new religious congregation.
Born in Etables, France, Anne-Thérèse Guerin's life was shattered by her father's murder when she was 15. For several years, she cared for her mother and younger sister. She entered the Sisters of Providence in 1823, taking the name Sister Saint Theodore. An illness during novitiate left her with lifelong fragile health, but that did not keep her from becoming an accomplished teacher.
At the invitation of the bishop of Vincennes, Indiana, Sr. Saint Theodore and five sisters were sent in 1840 to Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana, to teach and to care for the sick poor. She was to establish a motherhouse and novitiate. Only later did she learn that her French superiors had already decided the sisters in the United States should form a new religious congregation under her leadership.
Mother Theodore and her community persevered despite fires, crop failures, prejudice against Catholic women religious, misunderstandings, and separation from their original religious congregation. She once told her sisters, "Have confidence in the Providence that so far has never failed us. The way is not yet clear. Grope along slowly. Do not press matters; be patient, be trustful." Another time she asked, "With Jesus, what shall we have to fear?"
Mother Theodore is buried in the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana. She was beatified in 1998, and canonized as Saint Theodora Guerin eight years later.
God's work gets done by people ready to take risks and to work hard—always remembering what Saint Paul told the Corinthians, "I planted, Apollos watered, but God caused the growth." Every holy person has a strong sense of God's Providence.
Tuesday of the Twenty-sixth Week in Ordinary Time
Reading 1 Zec 8:20-23
Thus says the LORD of hosts: There shall yet come peoples, the inhabitants of many cities; and the inhabitants of one city shall approach those of another, and say, "Come! let us go to implore the favor of the LORD"; and, "I too will go to seek the LORD." Many peoples and strong nations shall come to seek the LORD of hosts in Jerusalem and to implore the favor of the LORD. Thus says the LORD of hosts: In those days ten men of every nationality, speaking different tongues, shall take hold, yes, take hold of every Jew by the edge of his garment and say,
"Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you."
Responsorial Psalm Ps 87:1b-3, 4-5, 6-7 R. (Zec 8:23) God is with us. His foundation upon the holy mountains the LORD loves: The gates of Zion, more than any dwelling of Jacob. Glorious things are said of you, O city of God! R. God is with us. I tell of Egypt and Babylon among those that know the LORD; Of Philistia, Tyre, Ethiopia: "This man was born there." And of Zion they shall say: "One and all were born in her; And he who has established her is the Most High LORD." R. God is with us. They shall note, when the peoples are enrolled: "This man was born there." And all shall sing, in their festive dance: "My home is within you." R. God is with us.
Alleluia Mk 10:45 R. Alleluia, alleluia. The Son of Man came to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Gospel Lk 9:51-56
When the days for Jesus to be taken up were fulfilled, he resolutely determined to journey to Jerusalem, and he sent messengers ahead of him. On the way they entered a Samaritan village to prepare for his reception there, but they would not welcome him because the destination of his journey was Jerusalem. When the disciples James and John saw this they asked, "Lord, do you want us to call down fire from heaven to consume them?" Jesus turned and rebuked them, and they journeyed to another village.
Meditation: Zechariah 8:20-23
We have heard that God is with you. (Zechariah 8:23)
"They were drawn like moths to a flame." This is what the prophet Zechariah might say if he were to speak this prophecy today.
Speaking about the future restoration of Israel, Zechariah said that foreigners from everywhere would be drawn to the people or, more precisely, to God, who was present in the midst of them.
Why would the people be so attracted to the Israelites? Because they would want what the Israelites had: the blessing of God's favor. Maybe they would hear about the Israelites' amazing exodus from Egypt. Or perhaps they would hear stories about Israel's conquest of the Promised Land and her defense against all the enemies that surrounded her. Maybe it would be the way Israel worshipped God alone rather than going after multiple gods—and was abundantly blessed for it. Clearly, Israel would stand out. Clearly, everyone else would see that God was with them!
What Zechariah promised the Israelites can happen in you. In fact, it is probably happening already, even if you can't see it. Many of the choices you make are affected in some way or another by your faith. That means the light of Christ's presence is already within you, so of course people will notice.
So keep shining! It doesn't take a lot of extra effort. As St. Francis de Sales once said, "Be who you are and be that well." In other words, do what God has called you to do in your life, and do it wholeheartedly. Trust in the goodness of God and in his grace at work in you. Relax and lean into his presence. Don't try too hard; just keep reminding yourself that Christ is in you, and he will shine out. And that will make you attractive to the people around you. Your witness of confidence and peace will spark people's curiosity and draw them to God's life in you, just as Zechariah promised would happen to the people of Israel.
Be who you are in Christ. By doing that, you are already proclaiming the good news. You are already shining the light of Christ because people will be able to see that he is real, and he is with you.
"Thank you, Lord, for abiding with me. Use me to draw more people to yourself."
Psalm 87:1-7 Luke 9:51-56
"Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you." ends the first Holy Gospel.
We pray today " God is with us." And they named Jesus Emmanuel, which in its entirety means "He Who Saves....God is With Us". Are With God?
The disciples following the Lord were rejected as they went ahead. I've been reading the book "The Life of the Blessed Virgin Mary From the Visions of Ven. Anne Catherine Emmerich" and I've been at the part lately upon the birth of the Lord. Nobody had room for them, quite frankly, in doing so....rejected the Lord. Not meanly, but as a matter of fact. People were told by many that the King was born and nobody really cared...they were unable to care. And this was the life until His death when Jesus decided He would die for everyone's salvation. On His way, the King, the miracle prophet, the one who stood out among all for them....they could not and would not give Him a place to stay. That is why are Lord said ", "Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head." Everyone has a place but not God. And so He would make it possible to go into the heart of the matter....the heart itself. God would show the way in humility. This is a tremendous act of love and courage intertwined that is strange in this world but is what Heaven is all about..... They say Jesus decided, He was resolute, and another scripture said He set His face like flint, like an arrow deep into the heart of the place of sacrifice....Jerusalem. To make it anew....a new Jerusalem, which means city of peace, which means the King of Peace would finally reside in all His humility forever... Is He welcome in your place today? tomorrow? Was He yesterday?