Sunday, October 15, 2023

Assimilate the Word

My prayer is to always remember with every breath to assimilate the Word within me.

To Hear and Observe the Word

On a human plane some days go better than others. And so once again we experience that in the present moment given to us it doesn’t really matter if the day is going well or not. What does matter instead is how we live our lives, and how that points to love, which alone gives value to everything. God in fact loves those who keep his Word.

Let us keep in mind that neither our successes nor our failures will accompany us to the next life. Were we to even give our bodies to be burned— without love it would have no meaning. Without love neither doing missionary work nor speaking with angels’ tongues, neither doing works of mercy nor giving everything to the poor has value (cf. 1 Cor 13:1-3). We can take with us to heaven only how all this was lived, that is, in accordance with God’s Word through which our love is expressed.

Let us start our day then with confidence, whether there be storms or sunshine. Let us remember that every day has value insofar as we have assimilated the Word within us. Christ will live in us and he will give value to the works we accomplish, whether directly or through our prayers and sufferings. In the end these are the works that will follow us into everlasting life (cf. Rv 14:13). We will realize in awe how the Word of God, the truth, makes us free regardless of external circumstances, of inner trials, and of the influence of the world around us, which attempts to diminish the fullness and beauty of God’s kingdom within us.

Servant of God Chiara Lubich

Chiara Lubich († 2008) was the founder and president of the Focolare movement. / From Heaven on Earth: Meditations and Reflections, Jerry Hearne, Tr. © 2000, New City Press, Hyde Park, NY. Used with permission.

From The Magnificat

Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Oct 4 - Bound to the Weakest - St Francis

 From my friend, Gerry Straub's journal:

October 4, 2023

Bound to the Weakest

Today we celebrate the Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi. The saint desired to pray continually, as

1 Thessalonians 5:17 recommends. Let us pray...

Blessed you are, Lord;

show me what you want me to do.

Lord, you have been our refuge

from generation to generation.

Lord, have mercy on me

-- I ask as I have asked before --

heal this soul that has sinned against you.

Teach me to do your will,

for you are my God.

In you is the source of all life;

in you is the light

whereby we shall see light.

Forever show your mercy

to them that have come to know you.


(A fragment of the ancient church’s prayer, the Te Deum, specially translated by Fr. A. Hamman, a Dominican friar.)

Words to Ponder

Because he himself assumed his full share in this labor of transformation, along with the humblest and poorest of his fellow men, [St.] Francis [of Assisi] discovered an aspect of God very different from that current among the adherents of ecclesiastical principalities and holy wars. For him, God ceased to be the external, dominating, and Transcendent One, the Lord in a more-or-less feudal dress. To him, God appeared as mysteriously present in our history, bereft of all trappings of power, bound instead to what was weakest and most despised in man’s world. Francis rediscovered God’s humbleness, God’s humanity. Not merely as an object of devotion, but as a new principle on which to reconstruct society. He understood that if one acknowledges the God of the Gospel, then one can no longer be satisfied with just any form of social organization. This acknowledgment is bound to bring about a transformation in human relationships; it involves seeking and bringing into being true brotherhood, a brotherhood that excludes nobody. The God of the Gospel lets himself be seen through other men, where there are no more lords and no more subjects, where no one is kept out. The dawn of true brotherhood is the light in which God is truly found.

-Eloi Leclerc, OFM,

Francis of Assisi: Return to the Gospel