Sun, 10 February 2019
O lovely Lady who appeared to Bernadette,
Mary, Blessed Virgin and Mother of our Lord –
let our eyes, too, see your beauty
and hear your voice
calling us to pray for sinners,
calling us to come to you with our prayers
and to wash ourselves clean
in the water you provide
through Jesus your Son.
O Immaculate Conception,
so pure, so full of grace,
cleanse all our sickness from us;
let us be immersed
in the bath of purity
that washes us of sin,
that makes us whole
in the sight of God.
If we but had innocent hearts
we would see you,
we would remember the blessing you are
to all faithful souls…
O let us come to you
and find the grace we need this day.
Sun, 10 February 2019
(Gn.1:1-19; Ps.104:1-2,5-6,10,12,24,31,35; Mk.6:53-56)
“How manifold are your works, O Lord!
In wisdom you have wrought them all.”
It is the Lord who “fixed the earth upon its foundation not to be moved forever,” and “with the ocean, as with a garment [He] covered it” – “the earth is full of His creatures.” By the Word of His mouth all comes into being, and is sustained, sustained in the goodness of God.
Here as we read the beginning of sacred Scripture, we might do well to quote St. Bonaventure from the day’s Office of Readings. In speaking of knowledge of Christ as “the main source of a firm understanding of the truth of all sacred Scripture,” He states: “It is impossible, therefore, for anyone to achieve this understanding unless he first receives the gift of faith in Christ. This faith is the foundation of the whole Bible, a lamp and a key to its understanding.” But how many read God’s Word as though in a dark room.
The prevailing lack of faith and so blindness to the truth of Scripture is evident again today in the commentary of my missal, which says of the Creation prophecy in Genesis, “The story is divided artificially,” giving as example the fact that “the sun is created after light.” How indeed we grope in darkness without the light of the Spirit; without childlike faith we shall never understand God’s Word, never enter His kingdom. Is the light of God dependent upon the sun or the stars? When our psalmist sings of the Lord “robed in light as with a cloak,” is it sunlight of which he speaks? Does the light of the Lord not necessarily precede the limited light of the sun – which the Lord has but made “to govern the day” for a time – even as it shall be all by which we see when the sun and the moon and the stars pass away? Where is your faith, where is your understanding… why is the Lord’s light not in you, my brother?
Brothers and sisters, as the people of Gennesaret upon seeing Jesus “immediately recognized Him” and “scurried about” to bring all their sick to Him, so we must be drawn by the light of God to the Truth that is Christ the Lord. He is in every page of Scripture. He is at work with the Father in Creation. He is the all-powerful Word which brings all into being by its eminent wisdom made flesh before our eyes; and we shall never know the wonder of God’s works and the wonders He has wrought in our own soul unless we come to faith in Him. In Jesus are all God’s works revealed. He is the light of the universe. (And though His radiance extends beyond our sight to infinite galaxies, it is here in this dome between clouds and sea we dwell, the earth from which we have been formed solidly beneath our feet.)
O LORD, you created the world and all it holds
and redeemed us by your Son –
let your light be upon us this day.
YHWH, by a word from your mouth you have created the heavens and the earth and given us light to guide our way. It is you in whom all glory and majesty dwell, yet you have made this world as a reflection of your beauty. For this we should ever praise you.
But how we have disfigured your Creation, LORD! How we have lost our way. Still, you do not leave us alone in the darkness we have made – to us you send your only Son, Word made flesh, Light of the world. And as we recognize in Him your glory in our midst, as we reach out to Him for healing, we are made well again, whole in your sight.
Let us dwell, O LORD, in the place you have made for us; in your goodness let us remain. Through the ministry of your Son let us be fed by your hand, that we might be led one day to your Promised Land.