Weekly Reflections

Reflection for June 21, 2015

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

As Jesus calms the stormy seas he, too, calms life's rough waters

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by Sister Madonna Swintkoske

Whenever I read this Scripture passage of Jesus calming the storm, I think of the time our family walked to my grandmother's in the winter.  When we came to the river, I would not cross the ice until my mother said, "Would your father take you anywhere that would harm you?"  My fears were calmed and I crossed to the other side with my family.

The event of this Scripture account is not something which happened once; it is something which still happens and which can happen for us.  In the presence of Jesus we can have peace even in the wildest storms of life.  Jesus gives us peace in the storms of anxiety.  Enemies of peace are worry and fear.  But Jesus tells us of a Father who will never cause us to fear or worry.  In the storm of anxiety Jesus brings us the peace of a loving Father.

For Father's Day we thank God for our earthly fathers and for God our heavenly Father.

 

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Reflection for June 14, 2015

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Even the smallest seed of faith can grow and great things

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by Sister Francis Bangert

In these early summer days when we are taken up with planting seeds, watching mysterious growth and anticipating a fruitful harvest, we hear in both the first and third Scripture readings for Sunday how growing God's reign is like planting a new shoot or a tiny mustard seed.

The Reign of God is living in the spiritual realities of truth, justice, goodness, and love. And like a tiny mustard seed that grows into maturity providing shelter for the birds of the sky, so the growing Reign of God reaches out and welcomes all to live in peace and harmony.

All of us are mustard seeds. With time and proper nourishment, we grow into adulthood, living more fully in the truth of who we are, living in right relationship with others and with Mother Earth, living in the goodness that is God, living in the spirit of loving one another.

As we tend our flowers and gardens these days, consider the following:  How am I using the precious gift of time to create harmony through nonviolence in my relationships with others, especially with those who look, speak, think differently than I? With Mother Earth?

 

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Reflection for Jan. 18, 2015

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Here I am. You called me. I'm eager to do your will!

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by Sister Mary Kabat

Doesn't it bring a smile and a swell of pride when you see your child or grandchild eagerly wanting to help you though the task is beyond his or her strength or ability?  Picture such a time when you hear the story from the First Book of Samuel of young Samuel waking to the Lord's call and eagerly running to Eli who he mistakenly thought was calling.  Picture such a time when you hear the story from the Gospel of John of the two disciples, one being Andrew, eagerly following Jesus and of Andrew bringing the news, "We have found the Messiah," to his brother Peter.

Jesus tells us we need to welcome and receive the Kingdom of God as a child does.  Let us listen, watch, and respond to the Lord's call each day -- eager to pray, eager to love, eager to serve, eager to offer our challenges and sufferings. As children, we will bring joy to our God.

 

 

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Reflection for Aug. 17, 2014

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Mom's persistence says volumes about her faith in Jesus

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by Sister Paulette Hupfauf

The scriptures this Sunday display differing aspects of Jesus' ministry.

Isaiah says, "Observe what is right, do what is just for my salvation is about to come. Foreigners join themselves to the Lord… will be acceptable on my altar, for my house shall be called a house of prayer for all my people."

Then in Matthew we hear the story of Jesus and the Canaanite woman (a foreigner) begging for healing for her daughter. Initially, the disciples suggest to Jesus that he send her away. It is the determination of the woman, who says, "Lord, help me."  Jesus says, "O woman, great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish." Her daughter was healed.

What a great example the Canaanite woman is for us! She persists as she has great faith that Jesus is kind and merciful. She does not give up in adversity. When we have a need and ask Jesus in prayer, we can follow her example and, with determination, persist. Our God is a loving God!

 

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Reflection for Aug. 10, 2014

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Keeping our eyes on the Lord helps us navigate life's storms

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by Sister Lynne Marie Simonich

Our Gospel for the 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time brings us to the sea.  Jesus invited Peter to walk on water to come to him.  Peter believed he would be able to do that and he stepped out of the boat to join Jesus.  As long as he looked to Jesus, he walked on the water.  When he focused on the strong winds and the waves, he sank.  He looked to Jesus for help and Jesus' hand brought him to safety.  He knew that Jesus had the power to save him and he did just that.

We celebrate with our Jubilarians who, like Peter, took a risk to follow the Lord.  They left the security of their homes and all that was familiar to them to step out and join Jesus.

In good times and not so good times, they have tried to keep their focus on the Lord.  In the storms of life and the calm moments, they have given their all.  They, like Peter, know that Jesus has taken them by the hand through all the experiences of their lives.  They also know that Jesus continues to walk with them as they journey through this life.

Let us thank our God for these women who have served God's people and have given us all a wonderful example of faith, dedication and selfless love!

 

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Reflection for Feb. 19, 2012

Thursday, February 16, 2012

by Sister Renee Delvaux Delvaux_Renee_Sr_2012-100px

When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, "Child, your sins are forgiven."

Talk about faith in action!  In today's Gospel Jesus heals the paralytic and forgives his sins because of his faith and that of his companions.  They could not get the paralytic through the doorway because of the crowd, so they carried him up to the roof, opened it and lowered him before Jesus.  These men were convinced that if they could just get the paralytic to Jesus, he would be healed.  What an example of ingenuity and persistence, true faith in action!

Are we that determined and ingenious in putting our faith into action?  Every day we are called to this, to "go the extra mile" to help someone in need, to publicly support an issue of truth and justice even when everyone else is silent , to witness to Christian values, even if shunned and ridiculed.  This is faith in action.

We have the option, daily, of responding to Jesus in faith or lack thereof.  Will we proclaim our faith like the crowds who gave glory to God at seeing Jesus' divine power to heal and forgive, or will we scorn Jesus in rejection and lack of faith.  We are capable of either response.  What will it be? I say: CHOOSE the FAITH response!

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Reflection for Dec. 18, 2011

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

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Related article:
Advent Minute

by Sister Lynne Marie Simonich

Were you ever given a gift but were told first to "Close your eyes and open your hands?" You probably did that, trusting the person would put something special in your hands. In our gospel for the Fourth Sunday of Advent, Mary opens her heart and soul, saying "yes" to God with total trust and a leap of faith. Her "yes" brought God's greatest gift to her and to our world -- the gift of Jesus!

Mary believed that "nothing was impossible with God" and she was willing to do what God asked even if it seemed difficult or hard to understand. She was open to possibilities and ready to take a journey she hadn't planned on taking.

During this last week of Advent, as the world is filled with busyness, may we find the space and time to close our eyes and open our hearts to welcome the Lord in a new way ... to say "yes" to whatever God asks of us ... to trust in God's grace and promise of everlasting love.

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