Carry the gospel with you

Posted in christian, Christianity, inspirational, religion, scripture by Mike on June 6, 2013

eda09bf67e1d541a7f0a5522d4bd7185_w600Gospel reading of the day:

Mark 12:28-34

One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him, “Which is the first of all the commandments?” Jesus replied, “The first is this: Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. The second is this: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these.” The scribe said to him, “Well said, teacher. You are right in saying, He is One and there is no other than he. And to love him with all your heart, with all your understanding, with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is worth more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.” And when Jesus saw that he answered with understanding, he said to him, “You are not far from the Kingdom of God.” And no one dared to ask him any more questions.

Reflection on the gospel reading: The great monotheistic religions all teach that God loves, and they are all correct to say this. But Christianity uniquely claims that not only does God love but that God is love itself. We Christians believe the one God is three: God is at one and the same time lover, beloved, and the love between them. We also believe we are made in God’s image. This gospel passage from Mark invites us to enter into the interior life of God by reciprocating with God the love given to us and by sharing our love with our neighbor. In the degree that we do this, we become like the God who makes us.

Saint of the day: Rafael Guízar Valencia was born in Cotija de la Paz, Michoacán, on April 26, 1878 (his brother, Antonio Guízar y Valencia [1879–1971], served as the ordinary of the Archdiocese of Chihuahua for 49 years). He was ordained a priest in 1901. With the start of the Mexican Revolution in 1910, persecution of the Catholic Church became severe, and Guízar became a special target because of his outspoken defense of the Church.

San Rafael Guizar y ValenciaHe went underground, disguised as a junk dealer, to continue his work as a priest. In 1915, when the government ordered that he be shot on sight, he escaped to the United States, and then went on to serve the Church in Guatemala and Cuba.

While in Cuba, Guizar was consecrated as bishop of Veracruz. The end of the revolution enabled him to return to Mexico in January 1920, and he joined Knights of Columbus Council 2311 in Xalapa, Veracruz, on August 16, 1923. As bishop, he founded a clandestine seminary to train future priests, noting that, “A bishop can do without a mitre, a crosier, and even a cathedral, but never without a seminary, because the future of his diocese depends on the seminary.” Bishop Guízar was forced to flee Mexico once again in 1927 during the persecution of the Church under President Plutarco Elías Calles. He returned in 1929, the year the Church reached an accord with the government after the end of the Cristero War, in part because of successful lobbying by the Knights of Columbus to get the U.S. government to take an active role in solving the crisis.

After his return to Mexico, Guízar continued his ministry, and became known as “the bishop of the poor.” He died on June 6, 1938. Bishop Guízar was beatified in 1995 and canonized in 2006.

Spiritual reading: Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Appreciate your friends. Continue to learn. Do what you love. (Mary Anne Radmacher)


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