Monday, September 17, 2012

Such Faith

The Gospel of Saint Luke, chapter 7, verses 1 to 10, is read today. It is all about a simple yet powerful faith in Jesus and His tender merciful Heart, which is touched by the people's misery. It is all about Jesus' praise of such faith and His rebuke that He did not find such faith in the Children of the Chosen Nation:

"When Jesus had finished all his words to the people,
he entered Capernaum.
A centurion there had a slave who was ill and about to die,
and he was valuable to him.
When he heard about Jesus, he sent elders of the Jews to him,
asking him to come and save the life of his slave.
They approached Jesus and strongly urged him to come, saying,
"He deserves to have you do this for him,
for he loves our nation and he built the synagogue for us."
And Jesus went with them,
but when he was only a short distance from the house,
the centurion sent friends to tell him,
"Lord, do not trouble yourself,
for I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof.
Therefore, I did not consider myself worthy to come to you;
but say the word and let my servant be healed.
For I too am a person subject to authority,
with soldiers subject to me.
And I say to one, 'Go,' and he goes;
and to another, 'Come here,' and he comes;
and to my slave, 'Do this,' and he does it."
When Jesus heard this he was amazed at him
and, turning, said to the crowd following him,
"I tell you, not even in Israel have I found such faith."
When the messengers returned to the house,
they found the slave in good health."

I repeat the same words of the centurion in every Mass right before receiving the Holy Communion, but do I really mean what I say? Do I believe that Jesus is truly present in the mystery of the Eucharist? Do I believe that I talk to Him and to the white wafer? And if I believe Jesus is present in the Eucharist, do I believe He hears me? Do I believe He listens to me? Do I believe His word is powerful enough to bring a desired change in my or someone else's life? Is this faith of mine full of humility and acceptance that He is everything, He is able, He is Merciful One, He is the Almighty One? And I cannot do anything without Him? Am I honest enough to admit I need Him? And I am helpless without Him?

As we celebrate St. Robert Bellarmin feast day today, and it is a feast day of the Patron Saint of my house in Kiabakari - St. Robert Bellarmin House (the main house, the rectory), I ask him to pray for me and all inhabiting and visiting my place - for the same kind of faith the centurion demonstrated in today's Gospel.

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