Day 7 — Blessed Maria Teresa Kowalska, Capuchin Poor Clare martyred by Nazis in
Polish (see comment) a concentration camp in German-occupied Poland, 1941: we are invited to open wide the doors of our hearts to welcome in and appreciate brothers/sisters of different races, religions, cultures.
“For we who live are constantly being given up to death for the sake of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may be manifested in our mortal flesh” (2 Cor 4:11).
“By death He conquered death, and to those in the tombs He granted life!” This is the Paschal troparion sung on Easter morning in the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Byzantine Rite of the Catholic Church. The compelling truth that Jesus has conquered death is the joy in the hearts of all Christians. It is the one thing that always conquers the evil one — the Love that is willing to experience suffering, and even death, for the sake of another.
St. James the Greater was the brother of John the apostle and son of Zebedee. He was the first apostle to be martyred in AD 44. He was buried in Jerusalem, but in the 9th Century his remains were brought to the city of Santiago de Compostela in Spain. The Cathedral that holds his remains is the conclusion of the pilgrimage called The Way of St. James, or el Camino de Santiago.
We are the pilgrim Church that travels the path of everyday life and the joys and sorrows that come with it. Most of us are not called to be martyrs in the way of the Apostles, but we embrace the crosses of daily sufferings, moment by moment, and offer them to Jesus. Blessed Solanus wrote of five ways to do this everyday:
1. Detachment of oneself from earthly affections, Singleness of purpose.
2. Meditation on the passion of Jesus Christ.
3. Uniformity with the Divine Will.
4. Mental prayer – meditation and contemplation
5. Prayer – “Ask and it will be given to you.” (Mt 7:7)
Today let us pray for the grace of suffering well and embracing whatever trials we encounter on the way of life, thus sharing in the joy of Resurrection that Jesus offers us in every moment.
O God, I adore You. I give myself to You.
May I be the person You want me to be,
and may Your will be done in my life today.
I thank You for the gifts You gave Father Solanus.
If it is Your will, bless us with the Canonization of
Father Solanus so that others may imitate
and carry on his love for all the poor and suffering of our world.
As he joyfully accepted Your divine plans,
I ask You, according to Your will,
to hear my prayer for…(your intention)
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
“Blessed be God in all His designs.”