- Category: brdaniel
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- Written by Br. Daniel Thomas, OP
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Tuesday in the Fourteenth week of the Church year.
Saint for the day: St. Veronica Giuliani (1660-1727)
Hosea 8:4 … 13
Jesus says: “I am the Good Shepherd. I know mine and mine know me.” (Ps 23)
The image of God as “Good Shepherd” is one of those familiar titles that can easily be passed over. We silently say to ourselves, “Yes, I know that…” and move on without thinking it through. If you take the time, you can see Jesus as “Good Shepherd” in and through most of the Scriptures.
Today’s healing of the dumb demoniac is a case in point. Even though Jesus didn’t go out searching for him he is brought to Jesus to be healed. This tells us something about what it means to be a follower of Jesus. Obviously, the people knew that Jesus had the power to heal and they didn’t just wait around for him to search out those in need. This reminds all of us of our duty to have concern for those most in need of healing. There is no room for a Christian to think, “Oh, that’s for somebody else to deal with.” We are reminded of the words directed to Jesus, “When did we see you hungry and not feed you …” words that should be the foundation of what our Christian life is all about.
By virtue of our baptism we are all endowed with the power to heal and build up the Kingdom of God. GK Chesterton’s words come to mind: “It’s not that Christianity has been tried and found wanting. It’s more that it hasn’t really been tried.”
St. Therese, the little flower, is quoted as saying, “See a pin and pick it up and a soul is saved from the power of Hell.” I’ve translated that on my own and say, “If you toss a wad of paper into the waste basket – and miss – and don’t go over to pick it up you’ll never be a saint!”
Most of us are “grandstand Christians” – or spectators always thinking, “That’s for somebody else to deal with.” Yet, we can see that even if we only bring someone in need to Christ we’ve done the first step in really carrying out our Baptismal responsibility. The parable of “the talents” has a good lesson for all of us. It’s not that the person who was just given the one talent is punished for not doubling it. It’s that he didn’t even do the most passive act of at least putting in the bank to gain interest. He buried it in the ground and brought it back just as he had received it! For this he was cast into the darkness as a wicked and lazy person. We all have to think of the times we have done at least some good for someone so that we hear the words, “Well done. Good and faithful servant. Enter into the Kingdom.”
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