Sunday, March 3, 2019

Eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time

In other years: Saint Katharine Drexel (1858-1955)

Readings of the Day
RB: Ch 28 Unlawful Association with the Excommunicated
Mass: Si 27:4-7; Resp Ps 92; 1 Co 15:54-58; Lk 6:39-45

Thanks be to God who gives us the victory through Our Lord Jesus Christ. 

I am thinking of a boss I had nearly 30 years ago; a woman I still call the best boss I ever had. There was something that stood out among her many qualities. Although I would not have used the word humility then, I use it now. She had the humility and wisdom to surround herself with people who were strong where she was weak. I remember the first interview when I completed a personality inventory and then she discussed with me the results and how we might complement one another. This required her to have self-knowledge, something she continually worked on. She also knew how to delegate and trust. When I needed help, I went to her. I recall 'our team' of about seven or eight people who met regularly in and outside of the workplace. We celebrated holidays, birthdays, and anniversaries. We read and discussed the latest books of the time, for example, Stephen Covey's The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and Edward De Bono's Six Thinking Hats. We all had Franklin Planners. We worked continuously to provide better customer service. Our team was not perfect; as individuals or as a group. Still, we were 'well-oiled' and called to be our best selves for our personal well-being and the well-being of the group and the company.

Now to the Gospel and one line: No disciple is superior to the teacher; but when fully trained, every disciple will be like his teacher. I still admire that boss I had. She taught me many things I remember and still practice. For one, date everything! For two, document, document, document! I am far from fully trained but my boss' support, trust, encouragement, and living example of how not to be the blind leading the blind continues to shine. She prepared herself and had the strength and courage to help others grow in self-knowledge and maturity. I remain grateful for the gift that she was to me.

A question that arises from all this: 'Am I open to conversion and growth in self-knowledge so that I can better encourage, support, and love others?'

Even though we do not celebrate her this year, Saint Katharine Drexel is a role model for us. I include what I read about her this morning: 'She was born in Philadelphia to a rich banking family. In 1891, at the age of 33, she founded the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, an Order dedicated to mission work among Indians and black people ... She spent her entire life and her entire fortune to this work, opening schools, founding a university, and funding many chapels, convents, and monasteries. She died March 3, 1955, by which time there were more than 500 Sisters teaching in 63 schools throughout the United States.'

A good person out of the store of goodness in her heart produces good, but an evil person out of a store of evil produces evil; for from the fullness of the heart the mouth speaks.


Humility begins with encountering God who looks on our weakness with mercy. And letting that transform us to see others, not with the eyes of judgement, but with the eyes of the heart.
(Daniel G. Groody)

The goodness in the character of the person necessarily becomes manifest in the nobility of beautiful demeanor and deeds, precisely in the same way that a good tree produces good fruit.
(Erasmo Merikakis)

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