Thursday, February 7, 2008

Thursday after Ash Wednesday

GOSPEL. ST. MATH, viii, 5-13.
(The Centurion at Capharnaum. Jesus goes to Mt. Olivet.)

At that time: when Jesus had entered into Capharnaum, there came to Him a centurion, beseeching Him, and saying: Lord, my servant lieth at home sick with the palsy, and is grievously tormented. And Jesus said to him: I will come and heal him. And the centurion making answer, said: Lord, I am not worthy that Thou shouldst enter under my roof, but only say the word, and my servant shall be healed. For I also am a man subject to authority, having under me soldiers; and I say to this, Go, and he goeth, and to another, Come, and he cometh, and to my servant, Do this, and he doth it. And Jesus hearing this marvelled, and said to them that followed Him: Amen I say to you, I have not found so great faith in Israel. And I say to you that many shall come from the East and the West, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Joseph, in the kingdom of heaven: but the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into the exterior darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. And Jesus said to the centurion, Go, and as thou hast believed, so be it done to thee. And the servant was healed at the same hour.

Christian Soul! Would that our divine Savior could say also of you, "Amen, I say to you, I have not found so great faith in Israel." May your faith, like that of the centurion, be humble and constant in regard to all that God has revealed and presents for your belief through His Holy Church. But join to your faith a pious life, since faith without good works is dead; and if you wish that Jesus should glorify you before His Father in heaven, you must always confess Him before men by word and deed. Behold your highest model, Jesus as He goes forth to Mount Olivet to begin His holy passion. "When Jesus had said this, He betook Himself with His disciples over the brook Cedron, where there was a garden, in which He and His disciples, entered." How the generosity and heroic love of Jesus puts to shame your cowardice and unfaithfulness in the service of God. "Pray lest ye fall into temptation," He says to Peter, James and John who witnessed His transfiguration on Mount Tabor. "And He began to tremble and to shudder." And you tremble not, O Christian, and you shudder not, O Christian, over the multitude of your sins and the weakness of your faith? Think of it, at least every Thursday, when the hour of death’s agony strikes, and pray with your suffering Savior: Through Thy last agony and dreadful dereliction, O my good Jesus, we beseech Thee, never forsake us, especially in the hour of our death, Amen.


O God, Who by sin art offended, and by penance pacified, mercifully regard the prayers of Thy suppliant people, and turn away the scourge of Thy anger, which we deserve for our sins.

Jesus Christ, God and Man, our beloved Savior, we cast ourselves with the centurion at Thy feet, and beseech Thee, cleanse our soul from all sin; grant us health of body and soul, perseverance in the faith, true sorrow and compunction in the hour of death, and by Thy agony on Mount Olivet, grant us perseverance unto the end; through the merits of Thy bitter passion and death, and through the intercession of Mary, the sorrowful Mother of God. Amen.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you Father for creating this opportunity to read and reflect on the daily Gospels during Lent in the quiet of my home. This is particularly helpful because I am not able to get to Mass on a daily basis.

May the Lord and the Blessed Virgin Mary continue to bless you and your vocation.