Thursday, 1 October 2009

The Little Flower

What blessings are to be found in the month of October! The first day itself brings in front of us that humble but great treasure of the Church, the Virgin and Doctor, Therese of Lisieux.
This deeply valued saint by many Christians and beyond has been nourished by the Gospel, fed by her intimacy with Jesus and pointed to a way, a little way, in which many have found peace and salvation.
Her appeal lies in the fact that she is able to point people to Jesus. Her confidence in God inspires us to live more closely to Jesus. There is a lot written about this Mystic of Mount Carmel and I always recommend her writings called “Story of a Soul”. Her relics are today resting in York Minster as part of the tour in the UK. How wonderful that on her feast day, this “little” French nun who died over a hundred years ago at the age of twenty four, is finding shelter in an Anglican House of Prayer, pointing afresh to her little way of confidence, trust and obedience, the way that leads to Jesus in whom alone we can become one.
Today is also the first day of the month of the Holy Rosary. Do not forget your daily Rosary; by this excellent prayer we contemplate the face of Jesus through the eyes of Blessed Mary. This is the Gospel in prayer. Here in the Parish it is busy as ever. However one ensures that there is enough time for prayer (is it ever enough?) and availability. For the rest the week is packed. RE lessons at two primary schools, with assemblies at a further two schools, hospital visiting, study, time in church, preparation time, meetings, administration, and many more routine work supported by a dedicated team of co-workers. A joyful blessing being granted to me is the parish visiting. It is such a joy to be with fellow Christians with whom I worship and to whom I am called to serve. It is great to get to know them better. Sitting with families round a table, sharing their joys and sorrows their laughter and concerns, experiencing their kindness and their deep faith is an honour I feel more and more that I do not deserve. It is however, a joy that throws me at the feet of Jesus, thanking Him for choosing me to be a priest and asking Him to give me the grace to love and serve them as He loves and serves me.

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