One Minute Reflection – 22 May – “Mary’s Month” – Friday of the Sixth Week of Easter, Readings: Acts 18: 9-18, Psalms 47: 2-3, 4-5, 6-7, John 16: 20-23
“Your hearts will rejoice and no-one will take your joy from you.” … John 16:22
REFLECTION – “You may object – I am in the world, if I rejoice I certainly rejoice where I am. What is this? Do you mean that because you are in the world you are not in the Lord? Listen again to the Apostle, speaking now to the Athenians in the Acts of the Apostles, he says this is of God and the Lord our creator, In him we live and move and have our being. If He is everywhere, where is he not? Surely this was what He was exhorting us to realise. The Lord is near, do not be anxious about anything.
This is a great truth, that He ascended above all the heavens, yet is near to those on earth. Who is this stranger and neighbour if not the one who became our neighbour out of compassion?
The man lying on the road, left half-dead by robbers, the man treated with contempt by the priest and the levite who passed by, the man approached by the passing Samaritan to take care of him and help him, that man is the whole human race. When the immortal one, the holy one, was far removed from us because we were mortal and sinners, He came down to us, so that He, the stranger, might become our neighbour.
He did not treat us as our sins deserved. For we are now sons of God. How do we show this? The only Son of God died for us, so that He might not remain alone. He who died as the only Son, did not want to remain as the only Son. For the only Son of God made many sons of God. He bought brothers for Himself by His blood, He made them welcome by being rejected, He ransomed them by being sold, He honoured them by being dishonoured, He gave them life by being put to death.
So, brethren, rejoice in the Lord, not in the world. That is, rejoice in the truth, not in wickedness, rejoice in the hope of eternity, not in the fading flower of vanity. That is the way to rejoice. Wherever you are on earth, however long you remain on earth, the Lord is near, do not be anxious about anything.” … St Augustine (354-430) Bishop, Great Western Father and Doctor of Grace – An excerpt from his Sermon 171
PRAYER – Holy God and Father, help us to discern through prayer and meditation what You truly want of us. Then enable us to offer it to You and indeed, to offer ourselves and all we have and all we are, to You. When You bring us sufferings to mould us closer and make us more like You, help us to accept them and offer them back to You and to do all we do for You in joy at Your nearness. Following Your divine Son, let us pick up those crosses in peace and love. Mary, Mother of God, pray for us. St Rita of Cascia, you prayed so earnestly to give yourself totally to the Lord and suffer for Him, please pray for us, amen.