In the days before the aves rang
She carried empty earthen jars to water,
Baking golden bread and dreaming the wispy dreams
That young girls create in their waking hours.
A young man has smiled upon them, and a fine home
Will soon will be their very own domain of earthly bliss,
Even housing perfect little children of their very own!
On Wednesday, 25 March, the feast of the Annunciation, the Pope has invited “the Heads of the Churches and the leaders of every Christian community, together with all Christians of the various confessions, to invoke the Almighty, the omnipotent God, to recite at the same time the prayer that Jesus, our Lord, taught us” – the Our Father. “On that day on which many Christians recall the Annunciation to the Virgin Mary of the Incarnation of the Word”, Pope Francis prayed, “may the Lord listen to the united prayer of all of His disciples who are preparing themselves to celebrate the victory of the Risen Christ”.
Ezekiel 47:1-9, 12; John 5:1-16
In today’s readings I find the potential benefits of water as a recurring theme. We hear of water in the desert and a pool with potentially healing powers. In the last month, this has not been many people’s experience of water, rather than life-giving, water has shown itself as destructive.
Isaiah 65:17-21; John 4:43-54
While the readings promise us healing in the afterlife, I wonder if the gospel is not telling us that the miracle of healing can be experienced in this life as well? Many skeptics say that miracles do not happen these days. It seems we rarely recognize the miracles around us or, when we do, we attribute them to the cleverness of man rather than the bountiful gifts of the Lord. God gave us the intellect that enables man to invent vaccines and antibiotics. He gave us our miraculous immune systems that defeat so many potential illnesses before they become manifested.
March 22: Day of Worldwide Solidarity and Prayer
Now is the time for each one of us to respond to the worldwide coronavirus crisis by being in solidarity with others, especially with those who are most vulnerable and most at risk. It is the time to follow the directives provided by the World Health Organization and our respective governments.
It is a special time for prayer and for witnessing through practical solidarity and awareness, our responsibly to care for one another. This extraordinary time provides space for acts of generosity and expressions of gratitude especially to those who are in the front line caring for the sick and those engaged in research projects searching for remedies, and those at work in the public services. No matter who they are or where they are, they should know that they are in the thoughts and prayers of sisters worldwide.
We therefore invite all the member congregations of UISG to make next Sunday 22nd March a day of worldwide solidarity and prayer especially for all those directly affected.
Sr. Jolanta Kafka rmi
1 Samuel 16:1, 6-7, 10-13; Ephesians 5:8-14; John 9:1-41
In going through this Sunday's readings, I couldn't help but be struck by how skeptical humans are. We find in John's gospel reading Jesus tells his disciples that the man born blind is not a sinner, and neither are his parents, but rather " he was born blind so that the works of God might be revealed in him." This is a familiar story, but it was filled with insight into human nature.
Hosea 6:1-6; Luke 18:9-14
Today’s readings talk about asking for forgiveness and mercy, and of redemption. David begs for forgiveness; Hosea discusses incredible generosity and grace for forgiveness; the Gospel refers to sin and cleansing. We have the theme here of repentance and knowledge, and of grace given.
Hosea 14:2-10; Mark 12:28-34
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,
With all your soul,
With all your mind,
And with all your strength.”
In my busy multi-tasking life, how frequently do I do the above?
Do I let other worldly concerns prioritize my energy?
2 Samuel 7:4-5, 12-14, 16; Romans 4:13, 16-18, 22; Matthew 1:16, 18-21, 24
“I will raise up your heir after you, sprung from your loins, and I will make his kingdom firm.” (2 Sam: 4-5a)
“The promise [is] guaranteed to all his descendants not to those who only adhere to the law but to those who follow the faith of Abraham.” (Rm 4:16)
“He did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took his wife [Mary] into his home.” (Matthew 1:24a)
Today is the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary and earthly father of Jesus of Nazareth. It might seem that we are taking a break from our Lenten readings, but not really. Today as we focus on Joseph we are encouraged to focus on a model of righteousness.
Prayer of St Joseph, sung by Angelina