Novena to Blessed Benedict Daswa
DAY TWO: – A MAN OF WORK
True to his motto, “Pray and Work”, Benedict believed in honest, hard work as a way of
glorifying God and helping people in the community. As Principal of Nweli Primary
School, Benedict was wholly dedicated to the work of education. One day a teacher
tried to skip his lesson preparation for the following week by going to the bank in Sibasa
to withdraw his salary. On noticing his absence, Benedict got in his car, chased after
him, stopped the taxi and made the teacher return with him to school to complete his
preparation. That done, Benedict then drove the teacher to the bank.
In his relationship with his learners, Benedict was always motivated by love. He
encouraged them to be diligent, independent and self-reliant. Those unable to pay
school fees were invited to work in his garden to earn their school fees. Benedict would
visit the families of absentees to find out the reason and to see if he could offer help.
With his own children, he worked in his vegetable garden and planted trees –
something quite unusual for school teachers, headmasters, or educated people in
Benedict exercised good stewardship by using his money wisely and well. He was the
first in his village to build a brick house with savings from his salary and from selling
vegetables and fruit from his garden and orchard. Through careful budgeting, he
purchased a car, TV set and telephone, but because of envy, some people suspected
him of making use of zombies (corpses supposedly brought back to life by witchcraft).
Word of God
It will be as when a man going on a journey called his servants and entrusted his
possessions to them; to one he gave five talents, to another two; to a third, one – to
each according to his ability. Then he went away. Immediately the one who received
the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five. Likewise, the one
who received two made another two. (Matthew 25, 14-15)
Deepening of Faith
Nazareth, O House of the “Carpenter’s son”, it is here that we would like to understand
and celebrate the severe and redemptive law of human labour; here restore
awareness of the nobility of work; here remember that work is not an end in itself, but its
freedom and its nobility come, as well as its economic value, from values which are its
goal; how we would like to finally welcome here all workers of the world and show them
their great model, their divine brother, the Prophet of all their just causes, Christ our
Lord. (Pope Paul VI, Address in Nazareth, 5 January 1964)
Reflection: Am I doing my job/work as well as I can?
Do I feel ashamed when doing manual work?
Prayer People go forth to do their work, to their labour till the evening falls.
How varied are your works, O Lord! In wisdom you have made them all;
The earth is full of your creatures. (Psalm 104, 23-24)
O Blessed Trinity,
I believe that you dwell in me through my baptism.
I love You, I adore You and I worship You.
I give you thanks for Blessed Benedict,
Whom you chose to bear witness unto death for his faith
In Jesus Christ, my Saviour and my Lord.
Almighty Father, You filled the heart of Blessed Benedict,
With great love and zeal in building up your kingdom.
You gave him the courage and the strength
To stand up for his faith without fear, even the fear of death.
Loving God, keep me free from all deeds of darkness.
Protect me from evil spirits and the powers of evil.
Make me a true apostle of life in my family and in society.
May Your light, O Lord, shine upon me and through me.
Lord Jesus, through the intercession of Blessed Benedict,
I ask that I may follow his example
Of always being ready to forgive in a Christian spirit.
You know all about my many problems and worries
And my great fears when I look to the future.
I draw strength and courage from the life of Blessed Benedict.
I come to You now, Lord, and through his intercession
I ask for this very special favour………
(mention your request/s)
if it is according to Your will.
Help me always to follow the good example of Blessed Benedict.
By daily prayer and regular attendance at Church,
Help me to love You, O Lord, above all things
And to love others as You love me.