Nehemiah 8:1-4A, 5-6, 7B-12
Psalm 19: 8-11
Luke 1-: 1-12
Our readings today reflect the spirit, depth of character and love of the young saint we celebrate today: St. Therese of the Child Jesus, Virgin and Doctor of the Church ,who at 15 entered the Carmelites and died in their cloister at the age of 24. A young woman of great love and fidelity in small things in every day life, Therese revealed her ‘little way" in her autobiography ‘Story of A Soul’. Her "little way" was fidelity in the small things of everyday life with great love, trust and complete self-surrender to God.
Our first reading from Nehemiah, recounts Ezra’s proclamation of the Law in an open plain upon the Israelite’s joyful return to Jerusalem from captivity in Babylon. "Today is holy to the Lord your God. Do not be sad and do not weep… rejoicing in the Lord must be your strength…" Was that not the source of the joy and strength of Therese? Is it ours today?
Our Psalm today is a hymn of praise of praise of God’s law as an expression of God’s will for God’s people… St. Therese and each one of us… refreshing our souls, giving wisdom to the simple, rejoicing our hearts… sweeter than syrup or honey from the comb… In the spirit of today’s reading… can we find joy in hearts that the Lord has for us this day?
Jesus in today’s gospel of Luke, appoints disciples, prays for them as He asks the Father to send laborers to proclaim His Kingdom… As each of us prays this Gospel…Let us put ourselves into this scene… we too are appointed to go… like Therese, whatever our circumstances of life… to announce God’s love, presence and Kingdom… bringing peace and God’s love … even in the midst of trials, sufferings…always with great love… with joy…. with trust in our God who sends us forth
today… and let us pray for one another.
Marcella Fabing CSJ, is on the staff at Christ the King Passionist Retreat Center, Citrus Heights, California.