December 03, 2016
St. Francis Xavier, S.J.
Mt 9: 35 – 10: 1. 5a. 6-8
Jesus went around to all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom, and curing every disease and illness. At the sight of the crowds, his heart was moved with pity for them because they were troubled and abandoned, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “At the harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.”
Then he summoned his Twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits to drive them out and to cure every disease and every illness. Jesus sent out these Twelve after instructing them thus, “Go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. As you go, make this proclamation: ‘The Kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, drive out demons. Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
Sharing God’s Friendship
Jerome Nadal, a 16th-century Jesuit companion of St. Francis Xavier, observed this about his friend: “His divine tact enabled him with a few winning words to endear himself to everyone he met. He got to know men so well that he worked wonders with them.”
It’s interesting that, when saints graduate into marble or stained glass, a transformation can happen that leaves them looking more at home in the next world than this one. But the fact is a saint’s work begins simply. When we consider those people who seem nearest to God, do any come to mind who aren’t smiling? I think of Jesuits I live with, my parents, an aunt who’s been in a wheelchair most of her adult life: they all have a friendship with God that is evident to me by the expression I always find on their faces.
Is there a neighbor, family member or friend for whom a smile of mine could work wonders today?
—Joe Kraemer, S.J., a Jesuit scholastic of the California province, is studying philosophy at Fordham University.
Then I, why should not I love Thee,
Jesus, so much in love with me?
Not for heaven’s sake; not to be
Out of hell by loving Thee;
Not for any gains I see;
But just the way that Thou did me
I do love and I will love Thee:
What must I love Thee, Lord, for then?
For being my King and God. Amen.
—St Francis Xavier SJ, translated by Gerard Manley Hopkins, SJ
THE POPE'S PRAYERS
Daily ExamenThe examen is a prayer popularized by St. Ignatius Loyola that helps us to recognize the ways that God is present and active in our daily lives.
- Stillness: Quiet yourself. Close your eyes and be still. Remember that in this moment you are in God’s presence and that God is now loving you. Take time to let yourself be looked at by the Lord.
- Gratitude: Take a few moments to recall one or two things from today for which you are especially grateful. Give thanks to God for these gifts and take time to savor them.
- Review: Review the events of the past day from start to finish, as if you were watching a movie. Notice the ways that God has been present today. Pay attention to your emotions and stirrings within your heart.
- Sorrow: As you have reflected upon your day, you may have noticed a moment from the day in which you have fallen short. Bring this experience to prayer and ask for God’s healing and forgiveness.
- Looking Forward: Look ahead to the next day and ask for God’s help and grace as you move forward with activities, commitments, and interactions with others. When you are ready, conclude your examen with the Our Father.
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