Tuesday of the Fifth Week in Ordinary Time
Malvern Minute


Tuesday of the Fifth Week in Ordinary Time

February 11, 2020

Deacon Anthony J. Cincotta

Assistant Director for Retreat Ministry 


Memorial Feast:  Our Lady of Lourdes (1858) – Patroness of France, Bodily Ills, the Sick and Protection from Disease

1 Kings 8:22-23, 27-30

Psalm 84:3, 4, 5 and 10-11

Mark 7:1-13

For those who believe in God, no explanation is necessary.  For those who do not believe, no explanation is possible.”  This quote is from the introduction of the 1943 film, “The Song of Bernadette.”  Today we celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes.  It was the first of eighteen apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary to the humble fourteen year old peasant girl Bernadette Soubirous that took place in Lourdes, France on February 11, 1858. On March 25th when Bernadette asked the Beautiful Lady her name, she replied, “I am the Immaculate Conception.”  Friends, if you have never “experienced” the movie, “The Song of Bernadette” you are missing one of the most beautiful and powerful experiences you will ever participate in concerning our Blessed Mother.  After viewing the movie feel free to contact me with your comments at tcincotta@malvernretreat.com.

In the musical “Fiddler on the Roof,” The lead character, Tevye, sings the song, “Tradition.”  He explains, “Because of our traditions, we’ve kept our balance for many, many years.  Because of our traditions every one of us knows who he is and what God expects him to do.”

Really!  Is tradition really such a clear indication of God’s will?  In today’s Gospel Jesus seems to be pretty well set against tradition.  He calls the scribes and Pharisees “hypocrites” and He does so for all the right reasons.

Jesus tells them that there are two things wrong with people inventing their own moral laws which they expect others to follow.  First, when people invent their own rules they are replacing God’s law with their own.  The second reason is that they are also rejecting God’s law outright.  To me it seems like they are trying to de-God god!

So, Tevye my friend, you may believe that because of tradition every one knows what God expects of them.  Well, not exactly!  If our traditions get in the way of the Word of God then those traditions of the elders are, well, bad.  But when tradition, like our sacred liturgy, serves the Word of God and helps pass along the one and only saving Gospel of Christ Jesus, well then, we all can sing and say, “Tradition, Tradition!”   

Question of the Day:  Is your personal “Catholic Tradition” to honor the Holy Gospel and discount all other forms of distractions in your faith journey?

Prayer:  “O star of purity, Mary Immaculate, Our Lady of Lourdes, glorious in your Assumption, triumphant in your coronation, show unto us the mercy of thy Son.  Virgin Mary, Queen and Mother, be our comfort, hope, strength, and consolation.  Amen.”  (“Prayer to Our Lady of Lourdes.”)



Consider joining the Men and Women of Malvern by deepening your personal relationship with Jesus and your commitment as a disciple through a weekend retreat. 

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