Monday, September 16, 2019

Monday of the Twenty-Fourth Week in Ordinary Time

Pope St Cornelius and St Cyprian, martyrs (-253)

Readings of the Day
RB: 3:1-6 Summoning the Community for Counsel
Mass: 1 Tm 2:1-8; Resp Ps 28; Lk 7:1-10

Blessed be the Lord, for he has heard my prayer.

St Paul, in today's passage from his first letter to Timothy, begins chapter 2 by asking us to pray. "First of all," Paul begins, "I ask that supplications, prayers, petitions, and thanksgivings be offered for everyone, the kings and for all in authority, that we may lead a quiet and tranquil life in all devotion and dignity." Yes, we are to pray for everyone, even those we don't care for and would prefer to insult or criticize. To be more specific, Paul asks us to pray for the kings and for all in authority. As Pope Francis preached in his homily this morning, Paul means "for people in government, for politicians, and for the people responsible for political institutions, nations, and regions." As I read about the lives of the saints we celebrate today, Cornelius and Cyprian, that would have included the emperor Gallus who had Cornelius exiled and the emperors Decius and Valerian who persecuted Christians, even the latter who had Cyprian exiled and executed!

We are to offer supplications, prayers, petitions, and thanksgiving for everyone. That should keep us busy this week. For those in authority, don't forget to pray for the rest of us. If anyone needs encouragement, he or she can turn to today's Gospel and the example of the centurion who petitions the Lord to heal his servant: Say the word and let my servant be healed. May we all strive to lead a quiet and tranquil life in all devotion and dignity.


© Gertrude Feick 2019

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