From the Deacon’s Desk: Prayer and Inspirational Thoughts
August 23 – Twenty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time
August 22 – Beautification of Frederic Ozanam
August 22 – Queenship of Blessed Virgin Mary
“You are Peter and upon this rock I will build my church!” Our gospel this week is all about the foundation of our Church. Jesus clearly lays the foundation as Peter and the papacy. Foundations are important because they give us stability, they give us grounding and they give us focus. They provide both parameters and modeling for us to understand how to live in relationship to God. Jesus even tells us earlier in Matthew’s gospel to build your house on a solid foundation and not on shifting sands. Peter through the inspiration and direction of Jesus, the papacy, and church teachings gives us a solid foundation. The traditional family structure provides that same solid foundation for our children. The Trinity provides a model and foundation of how to form and feed a marriage. All of these foundations are grounded in humility of heart and a desire to know and follow God’s will as their core foundation.
In SVdP, we have solid foundations as well – foundations built through humility and prayer. This Saturday is the 23rd anniversary of the Beatification of Blessed Frederic Ozanam, our founder. It is also the Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Frederic was inspired by St. Vincent DePaul in his approach to Christ through the poor and vulnerable. Frederic provides the foundation for us as a vocation inspired and driven by the lessons of St. Vincent. He provides us the Rule to guide us in our actions giving us guidance for our work. It is only through humility and submission of our will that we are able to effectively become church and it is also through humility that we are transformed as Vincentians. The Blessed Virgin Mary exemplified humility and submission of will to God. Do we serve in humility, accepting the guidance and wisdom of the Rule to form our work? Do we go to the Lord in prayer, trust and submission as St. Vincent, the Blessed Virgin Mary and Frederic would instruct us to? Do we accept Divine Providence in our lives? Is our ministry set upon rock or shifting sands?
Father, grace me with the humility to submit to the Rule in my ministry. Allow me to be a part of the fabric of the Society, inspired by Vincent, Blessed Virgin Mary and Frederic, trusting in the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Through prayer and humility, let me serve with and for my fellow Vincentians as we work to grow in holiness. And bring me in humility and patience before our masters, the poor, offering gentleness and kindness that their wounds and mine might be healed. Father, if it be your will, grant that Blessed Frederic be canonized for all his good works. I pray all of this in your Son’s name. Amen
Hail Mary, Full of Grace, The Lord is with thee.
Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now, and at the hour of death. Amen.