September 23, 2014
Angela Maynard

Creighton's Student Health Services
Click here for photo and information about the writer

Memorial of Saint Pius of Pietrelcina, Priest
Lectionary: 450

Proverbs 21:1-6, 10-13
Psalm 119:1, 27, 30, 34, 35, 44
Luke 8:19-21

Praying Ordinary Time

I must be honest. These readings have been a challenge for me.  I have read over, and over, pondering, and praying for guidance and wisdom.  As I read again, the following verse from Proverbs sticks with me:
He who shuts his ear to the cry of the poor will himself also call and not be heard. 

This certainly reminds me of something our beloved Pope Francis may call to our attention.  One must not only hear, but respond to the cry of the poor.  We must remember that the poor aren’t only those who lack in material things, but those lacking security, self- esteem, and the feeling of being loved to name a few items that we take for granted.  We must listen, and be prepared to respond to the needs of each other.  Sometimes we are just too busy to do this, or we presume that somebody else will also hear, and take care of the response part so we don’t have to.

Today’s responsorial psalm gives us directions that if followed, could help us stay close to our Lord.  Just as the psalm states:  Guide me, Lord, in the way of your commands.  

Finally, the gospel for the day according to St. Luke: 

The mother of Jesus and his brothers came to him
but were unable to join him because of the crowd.
He was told, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside
and they wish to see you.”
He said to them in reply, “My mother and my brothers
are those who hear the word of God and act on it.”

This is a small but mighty passage if we think about it. Jesus completely adored his mother, Mary.  Today, he puts us at the same level as his mother.  The gospel ties right into the verse from Proverbs that got to me — Christ indicates that we are equal to his mother and his brothers when we hear the word of God and act on it.

Very simply put, today’s lesson emphasizes the importance of listening, not just hearing.  Perhaps the adage, "actions speak louder than words," was derived from St. Luke’s gospel.

Let us pray that we are blessed with the patience to listen, and respond in ways that would be pleasing to Jesus.

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