One Minute Reflection – 5 September – “Month of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary” – Readings: Isaiah 35: 4-7a; Psalm 146: 7-10 (1b); James 2: 1-5; Mark 7: 31-37 and the Memorial of St Lawrence Justinian (1381-1455) Bishop
“And taking him aside from the crowd privately, he put his fingers into his ears and, after spitting. touched his tongue.” – Mark 7:33
REFLECTION – “Divine Strength came down, which we humans cannot touch; it covered itself with a palpable body so that the poor might touch it and, in touching Christ’s Humanity, might perceive His Divinity. The deaf-mute sensed that his ears and his tongue were being touched with fingers of flesh. Through those palpable Fingers, he perceived the intangible Divinity when the bonds of his tongue were broken and the closed doors of his ears opened. For the body’s Architect and Artisan came to him and with a gentle word, without pain, He created openings in deaf ears. Then, too, the mouth, that had been closed and until then, incapable of giving birth to a word, brought forth, into the world, the praise of Him who thus caused its sterility to bear fruit.
In the same way, the Lord made paste with His saliva and spread it over the eyes of the man born blind (Jn 9:6), so we might understand that, like the deaf-mute, He was lacking something. An inborn imperfection in our human dough was removed thanks to the leaven that comes from His perfect body …. To complete what was missing in these human bodies of ours, He gave something of Himself, just as He gives Himself to be eaten [in the Eucharist]. By this means, He causes our deficiencies to disappear and raises the dead, so that we might recognise that, thanks to His body in which “the fullness of deity resides” (Col 2:9), the deficiencies in our humanity are brought to completion and true life is given to mortals by this Body in which true life resides.” – St Ephrem (c306-373) Deacon in Syria, Father and Doctor of the Church – Sermon “On our Lord,” 10
PRAYER – Almighty and merciful God, open the ears and eyes of our hearts and fill us with Your grace. May we follow You in holiness all the days of our lives. Grant we pray, that as You brought Your Saints and Martyrs to overcome fearlessly, the persecutions of Your people, that we too may remain invincible under Your protection and by their prayers, be strengthened against the snares of the enemy. St Lawrence Justinian, pray for us in these times of evil! Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.