One Minute Reflection – 3 December – “Month of the Immaculate Conception” – Friday of the First week of Advent – Readings: Isaiah 29: 17-24; Psalm 27: 1, 4, 13-14; Matthew 9: 27-31 and The Memorial of St Francis Xavier SJ (1506-1552)
“And their eyes were opened …” – Matthew 9:30
REFLECTION – “Master, O Christ!, Master Who saves souls,
God, Lord of all Powers both visible and invisible
because You are the Creator of all in Heaven
and under the heavens,
of what is under the earth
but also of what is on earth …:
You hold all things in Your Hand
because it is Your Hand, O Lord, that is the great power
accomplishing Your Father’s will,
shaping, forming, creating
and guiding our lives in an inexpressible way.
This, then, is what created me, too
and called me into being, from nothing.
So I was born into this world
yet wholly failed to know You, You my good Master,
You my Creator, You Who fashioned me.
I was in the world like someone blind
and as though without God, since I did not know my God.
Then You, in person, pitied me and looked upon me,
when You shone Your Light into my darkness, You converted me
and drew me to Yourself, O my Creator.
And when You had snatched me out of the depths of the pit …
of this life’s pleasures and desires,
then You showed me the way and gave me a guide
who would lead me to Your commandments.
I followed him, followed him without a care …
but not only that, when I saw You there – You my Good Master –
together with my guide and my Father,
I experienced inexpressible love and desire.
I was beyond faith, beyond hope
and said: “Now indeed I see the good things to come” (cf. Heb 10:1),
the Kingdom of Heaven is there.
I saw before my eyes those things “that eye has not seen
nor ear heard”(Is 64:3; 1 Co 2:9).” – St Simeon the New Theologian (949-1022) Monk (Hymn 37)
PRAYER – Lord, watch over Your people who come to You in confidence. Strengthen the hearts of those who hope in You. Give courage to those who falter because of their failures. In this holy season of Advent, lead them closer to You in faith and hope, by the power of your Holy Spirit. May they proclaim Your saving acts of kindness here on earth and one day, in Your eternal kingdom and may the prayers of the Blessed Virgin Mary conceived without sin and Your great Missionaries, St Francis Xavier, and St Birnus bring us light and strength. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.