Greetings on this the Memorial of Saint John Chrysostom, Bishop and Doctor of the Church
Readings: 1 Tm 2:1-8; PS 28:2, 7, 8-9; Lk 7:1-10
Notes: Change is hard to make sometimes. Rejecting Jesus’ command to be reflective is in itself a reflex response. But we can change our perspective to be reflective and have reflexes that respond to God appropriately.
John Chrysostom’s preaching, by word and example, exemplifies the role of the prophet to comfort the afflicted and to afflict the comfortable. For his honesty and courage, he paid the price of a turbulent ministry as bishop, personal vilification, and exile.
First of all, I ask that supplications, prayers, petitions, and thanksgivings be offered for everyone,
for kings and for all in authority, that we may lead a quiet and tranquil life in all devotion and dignity. This is good and pleasing to God our savior, who wills everyone to be saved and to come to knowledge of the truth.
Paul says further, It is my wish, then, that in every place the men should pray, lifting up holy hands, without anger or argument.
Blessed be the Lord, for he has heard my prayer.
Hear the sound of my pleading, when I cry to you,
lifting up my hands toward your holy shrine.
God so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son,
so that everyone who believes in him might have eternal life.
The gospel portion today reinforces the idea that prayer is the critical component to relationship with Jesus. Jesus did not need to come to the Centurion’s home. The Centurion knew that honest requests to the Divine are answered, even remotely. The Centurion’s power and authority are nothing in the face of real human needs.
If it is not difficult for Jesus to heal remotely a fatal medical situation, then we should not hesitate to intercede for every need, for everyone.
So Paul’s words have an even deeper meaning now:
It is my wish, then, that in every place the men should pray, lifting up holy hands, without anger or argument.
Let God be God for you and for everyone.
Peace be with you,