Carry the gospel with you

Posted in christian, Christianity, inspirational, religion, scripture by Mike on March 6, 2014

Gospel reading of the day:

Luke 9:22-25

Jesus said to his disciples: “The Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised.” Then he said to all, 89264f58028a22a8b22c6e11ef8418dd_w600“If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. What profit is there for one to gain the whole world yet lose or forfeit himself?”

Reflection on the gospel: When things go well, following Jesus is not hard. But the acid test is following Jesus when things are not going well–when following Jesus means we will lose friends and family, leave us with damaged or ruined reputations, become jobless or even homeless, and perhaps even die. And sometimes, even the big things are easy; as Flannery O’Connor once observed, “She thought she could be a martyr if they killed her quick.” Sometimes the acid test of being a follower of Jesus is keeping our cool in terrible traffic, being compassionate when our children make mistakes, or being kind and thoughtful to someone who is neither to us. Faith which doesn’t work through love, faith that sits there dumbly and blindly, faith that ignores the poor, the hungry, the homeless, the orphan, is not the faith of Jesus. Søren Kierkegaard once said that purity of heart is to will the one thing. For Christians, of course, the one thing is Jesus both in thinking as he thought and doing as he did. What distinguishes the saints from all the rest of us is their ability to lose themselves completely and will the one thing, thus losing their lives to save them.

Saint of the day: María del Pilar Cimadevilla y López-Dóriga, known by the nickname Pilina, was born in Madrid on February 17, 1952. She was the daughter of Colonel Cimadevilla Amaro and Maria del Rosario Lopez-Doriga.

mariaDelPilarFrom an early age she was known for her docility, intelligence, and piety. Her first communion was a major milestone in her life, and she prayed with an attentiveness uncommon for her age. She often visited churches to pray and never let a day go by without saying her rosary.

At the age of nine, she contracted Hodgkin’s disease, an irreversible and painful disease that she accepted with serenity. At the hospital where she was cared for by the Daughters of Charity, she was asked about joining the Union of the Missionary Infirm. Pilina welcomed the idea and began offering her sufferings for the missions and the conversion and salvation of souls. Pilina’s soul matured through her illness and those who knew her were amazed at her heroism in suffering and joy in sacrifice. A few days after turning 10, on March 6, 1962, Pilina died in the arms of her mother. She was declared venerable in 2004.

Spiritual reading: Do not seek the perfection of the law in human virtues, for it is not found perfect in them. Its perfection is hidden in the Cross of Christ. (St. Mark the Ascetic)


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