Provoked by a Mother's Love

(from the 2010 Magnificat Lenten Companion)

While traveling across country by train, young Katharine Drexel visited Native American reservations. She was a Philadelphia Drexel. Her experience brought her into contact with human poverty - the poverty that can destroy you if you don't know Jesus. On a later trip, her grand tour of Europe, Katharine begged the Holy Father in a private audience to send missionary priests to those places. Katharine, who was struggling in her heart about whether to enter the contemplative life, received a terrifying answer. Pope Leo XIII responded: "Why not, my child, yourself become a missionary?" One of the most powerful men in the world asked on of the richest women in the world to give up everything and serve those who were considered the lowliest. The Pope's suggestion was faithful to a teaching resulting from an earlier woman's request. "Command that these two sons of mine sit, one at your right and the other at your left, in your kingdom," the mother of James and John said to Jesus. It was a request provoked by a mother's love for her children, even if it was swiftly rejected. It is a question that can save the souls of people today who accept the answer of Jesus. It is a teaching that helps us stay close to Jesus today and for ever.

Reflection based on Matthew 20:17-28
Father Michael Nolan

Gracious Father, open my ears to your will so that those in
need will be served with my hands.

Today's suggested penance: Serve someone today with love.