Ever Present and Ever Loving
Malvern Minute


September 19, 2017 – Tuesday of the Twenty-Fourth Week in Ordinary Time

Saint Januarius, Bishop and Martyr

Mark J. Poletunow, Malvern President (mpoletunow@malvernretreat.com)

Click for: Readings for the day (From the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops)

A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke (7:11-17)

Jesus journeyed to a city called Nain,
and his disciples and a large crowd accompanied him.
As he drew near to the gate of the city,
a man who had died was being carried out,
the only son of his mother, and she was a widow.

A large crowd from the city was with her.
When the Lord saw her,
he was moved with pity for her and said to her,
“Do not weep.”
He stepped forward and touched the coffin;
at this the bearers halted,
and he said, “Young man, I tell you, arise!”
The dead man sat up and began to speak,
and Jesus gave him to his mother.

Fear seized them all, and they glorified God, exclaiming,
“A great prophet has arisen in our midst,”
and “God has visited his people.”
This report about him spread through the whole of Judea
and in all the surrounding region.


Reflect: He was moved with pity for her. In today’s gospel, Jesus encounters a widow who is mourning the loss of her only son. Nine words instantly changed her life: “Do not weep.” And, “Young man, I tell you, arise!” We don’t hear her asking anything; but the compassionate heart of Jesus is “moved with pity.” He doesn’t preach a theological treatise; rather, he immediately responds in the best way possible to console and encourage the heart of this grief-stricken mother. We know nothing about her level of faith before or after this miracle. Maybe it was a foreshadowing of Jesus’ encounter with his own mother on the road to Calvary. Regardless, Jesus knew her heart and he was moved to action. If nothing else, this gospel message reminds us that our God is ever-present and constantly tuned-in to our hearts.  The more that we let go of our own desires and seek to be united with the will of God, the more we will experience the consolation, strength and peace that only a relationship with him can bring us. Even if we question his presence in our lives and his attentiveness to our needs, Jesus loves us beyond measure, and he knows our hearts better than anyone ever could.

Questions: Is my heart disposed to welcome Jesus and his will in my life at every moment? Do I trust that Jesus loves me beyond measure and that he will do whatever is best for me? How might I begin to turn over my ego and expectations to Jesus and live in acceptance of his will in my life?

Pray: Loving God, your love for me is beyond measure. Help me to trust you and to believe that you will never forget about me and my needs.  I pray this in the powerful and perfect name of Jesus. Amen.

Saint Januarius: Pray for us!

In 305, Januarius was arrested as he attempted to visit other Christians in jail. Legend has it that, as a sentence, he and his companions were thrown to wild bears to be tortured and killed. The animals did nothing, so Januarius and the others were beheaded. As early as 1389, his blood has liquefied on this and other days each year. He is the patron of Naples. In our contemporary world, he is remembered in New York City at the annual San Gennaro festival.



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