Carry the gospel with you

Posted in christian, Christianity, inspirational, religion, scripture by Mike on May 5, 2014

Gospel reading of the day:

John 6:22-29

After Jesus had fed the five thousand men, his disciples saw him walking on the sea. The next day, the crowd that remained across the sea saw that there had been only one boat there, and that Jesus had not gone along with his disciples in the boat, but only his disciples had left. 86edaecd86f60e7b2cee260eace72682_w600Other boats came from Tiberias near the place where they had eaten the bread when the Lord gave thanks. When the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they themselves got into boats and came to Capernaum looking for Jesus. And when they found him across the sea they said to him, “Rabbi, when did you get here?”

Jesus answered them and said, “Amen, amen, I say to you, you are looking for me not because you saw signs but because you ate the loaves and were filled. Do not work for food that perishes but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him the Father, God, has set his seal.” So they said to him, “What can we do to accomplish the works of God?” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in the one he sent.”

Reflection on the gospel reading: There are lots of reasons why we may follow the path Jesus sets before us. For many of us, the search for Jesus is a madcap pursuit that we engage in fits and starts. Things can go well in our lives, or we can get too busy, and we start to let our relationship with the Lord slip. We recognize when we engage with God, things go more smoothly, so when we get ourselves in a jam, we return to the source and reengage. There is nothing wrong with this; after all, Jesus invites us to pray always and teaches us in the Lord’s prayer that praying for our daily bread is a good thing to do. Jesus invites us to experience something more: the deepdown nourishment of life lived in him. The question that haunts us in the spiritual life is whether we are women and men who seek the consolations of God or the God of all consolation.

Saint of the day: The Servant of God Ismael Molinero Novillo was born in Tomelloso, Ciudad Real (Spain) on May 1, 1917 and lived between the two world wars, dying a prisoner died during the civil war in Zaragoza on May 5, 1938 at age 21. He was the fifth of eleven Ismael Molinero Novillochildren. His father was a blacksmith. Ismael began studies but soon had to leave to help the family working as a shop assistant. At school he was a good student, and in the workplace, he was diligent in customer service, which his employers gratefully acknowledged. He played the guitar, recited poetry, and wrote and directed plays. He was also the leader of a gang of friends who admired him for being outgoing, fun, and cheerful. Through a friend, he entered Youth Catholic Action in 1934 and, in the midst of his private life and work, remaining joyful in his disposition, he began to look after and care for the poor people and the elderly homeless. He entertained them with guitar, songs, and dances. He made a retreat at a seminary in 1935 in Ciudad Real and impressed the priests and seminarians with his spirituality.

MolineroIn February 1938, Ismael was taken prisoner by the Spanish Republican Army at the Battle of Alfambra. They took hundreds of militants to a holding place for cattle that they used provisionally as a prison in Santa Eulalia del Campo. That winter was a very hard one, with temperatures more than 20 degrees below zero and ice covered with snow. Ismael became ill with pneumonia; the disease was said to have “degenerated into tuberculosis.” Despite his illness, he continued to offer his life in prison to God for peace; Ismael would not betray Catholic Action and chose complete silence rather than speak about his association with it. In mid-February 1938, he was transferred to the concentration camp of San Juan de Mozarrifar near Zaragoza, and continued his martyrdom of silence until, near death, he spoke for the first time to give his confession and receive communion. He died at the Clinical Hospital of Zaragoza on May 5, 1938. His reputation for holiness spread throughout Zaragoza. The diocese of Ciudad Real submitted its investigation to Rome in 2009 in the first part of the cause for his canonization.

Spiritual reading: The way of Jesus cannot be imposed or mapped — it requires an active participation in following Jesus as he leads us through sometimes strange and unfamiliar territory, in circumstances that become clear only in the hesitations and questionings, in the pauses and reflections where we engage in prayerful conversation with one another and with him. (Eugene H. Peterson)

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