Gospel - September 23, 2014

Memorial of Saint Pius of Pietrelcina, Priest
LK 8:19-21

The mother and brothers of Jesus came to him, but they could not reach him because of the crowd. And he was told, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, wanting to see you.”

But he said to them, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.”

New Revised Standard Version Bible: Catholic Edition, copyright 1989, 1993, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Approved by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Reflection - September 23, 2014

The first silent retreat I went on was eight days long. It was terrible. I couldn’t focus in prayer. I was intimidated by my spiritual director. By day four I was talking to myself. Worst of all was the silence I got from God. After all, I had taken the risk of signing up for eight days of silence in the hope that God would have something to say to me, and for eight long days I got nothing.

When the retreat was over, I couldn’t wait to get out of there. But I still clung to the desire that had led me there in the first place: to know and love Jesus more deeply. So, a few days after the retreat, I went to the chapel. With as much heart as I could muster (which really wasn’t much at that point), I prayed, “Lord, come into my life, enter my heart, and make it your home.”

I suddenly heard, within the ear of my heart, two words spoken clearly and with force: “MAKE ROOM!”

With abrupt clarity I saw that my heart had been so full of distractions, agendas, plans, and anxieties, there was no place for Jesus to hang his hat in there, much less make his home!

Sometimes what looks on the surface like rejection is actually an invitation. I thought God’s silence during my retreat was a rejection, but it was really an invitation to be free from what had been tangling my heart.

In the Gospel today, what appears to be Jesus’ rejection of his own family is really an invitation to all people to join that family—to hear the word of God and to do it. It is the tempter’s work to make us believe we are rejected by God, so let us recognize the “rejections” we experience as an invitation from the Lord to be free for something great.

Kalene Morris ‘12MTS

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Prayer - September 23, 2014

Lord, you reward those who seek you. Grant us the gift of knowing your presence in our lives, and please guide us with your grace. We ask this in the name of the Lord, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Father Bill Simmons, C.S.C.

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