Thursday, October 10, 2013

Mary TV Daily Reflection 10/10/2013

Cardinal Schoenborn

Cardinal Schönborn at St. Stephen's Cathedral, September 24, 2013
(c)Mary TV 2013

October 10, 2013

Dear Family of Mary!

"Dear children, I love you all. All of you, all of my children, all of you are in my heart. All of you have my motherly love and I desire to lead all of you to come to know God's joy. This is why I am calling you. I need humble apostles who, with an open heart, will accept the Word of God and help others to comprehend the meaning of their life alongside God's word. To be able to do this, my children, through prayer and fasting you must learn to listen with the heart and to learn to keep submitting yourselves. You must learn to keep rejecting everything that distances you from God's word and to yearn only for that which draws you closer to it. Do not be afraid. I am here. You are not alone. I am imploring the Holy Spirit to renew and strengthen you. I am imploring the Holy Spirit that, as you help others, you too may be healed. I am imploring Him that, through Him, you may be God's children and my apostles. For the sake of Jesus, for the sake of my Son, love those whom He has called and long for the blessing only from the hands which He has consecrated. Do not permit evil to come to reign. Anew I repeat - only alongside your shepherds will my heart triumph. Do not permit evil to separate you from your shepherds. Thank you."  (September 2, 2013)  

It seems that Cardinal Schönborn and Our Lady are on the same page! This message was given three weeks before the Cardinal gave this beautiful homily at the Evening of Prayer at St. Stephen's Cathedral. Yet, the message is so similar. I have transcribed his homily at that event, for your further reflection upon it. It was a profound teaching for us:

Dear prayer community who are in the Dome, or those connected with us via Radio Maria or Live Stream...two simple thoughts.

God tells us through the readings (these are both the readings of the 25th week)...First the Gospel, it's a bit confusing, isn't it? Imagine the Dome full as it is now, so that people cannot even move, there are so many people around Jesus. And there in front is Mary, His Mother, and His brothers, His relatives from Nazareth. And they want to see Him. We know from St. Mark that they were not very happy that Jesus left. They wanted to hold him back even with violence.

Thus, says the Bible, they said that He was crazy; He was out of His mind. The work, His family, His mother, He had left them. He just left and went away. Now they try it again, a bit more gently. They stand in front of the door. They don't say anything. But people have seen them, Mary and all the relatives of Jesus, standing in front of the door. And they say to Him, to Jesus that they are there.

We would expect that He would get up and say, "Please make space so that my Mother can come in, at least His mother, if not all His relatives. But He gives a very secret and clear answer, "My mother and my brothers, who are they. They are the ones who hear God's word and act on it." Jesus has founded a family, but not a physical family, not His own clan, His own relatives, not even His Mother because of who she is. He has founded a new family. Today this family is gathered in great numbers, His family. He who listens to My word and acts upon it is mother and brother and sister to me. One family.

It is not a physical family. It is not a national family. It is a family of all people, of all nations, languages and color, whoever listens. Whoever listens to His word and whoever acts upon it is mother, brother and sister to Him. And that is what He came for, to gather His family together. And together this family is in the whole world everywhere. It even goes beyond this world, into heaven, the many who have walked before us into heaven. Many are here, but you cannot count the number of brothers and sisters, the mother of Jesus who are already with him in heaven. This is His family and together with this family, He came. This family does not know any boarders. And He had to be a bit tough. Who are my mother, my brothers and my sisters? The ones who do the will of My Father.

First, he had to make clear that it is not the physical clan. There is so much selfishness in families. the dignity of family, the interest of family. Beyond that, the national interest, the cultural interest, one people against the other people, one family against the other family. Even within families, what is important within families...brothers and sisters, how many babies have died within the womb of the mother because one was afraid of the unworthiness (scandal) it could be for the family?

Jesus has found a different family, a family that is not first connected through blood but through faith. Brothers and sisters, I can witness to that, and many of you can witness to it. Some families who broke up in a human way, have come together again through faith. Some families that by jealousy and sin were broken have been healed through faith. They are members of His family.

Pope Francis used this wonderful image of Lazarus. The church is like Lazarus, where the wounded need to be collected. They first need aid. The question is not "Is everything ok in your life?" but, "You need help, you need healing, you need mercy and understanding". This is the family of Jesus.

Now we can see what a special place His mother had in this family not because she was his earthly mother, but because she believed. St. Augustine said Mary is not blessed because she was His physical Mother, but because she believed.   And then of course, also the incredible privilege to be the physical mother of Jesus. But the word, "Those who are my mother and brothers and sisters are those who listen to the word of God and act on it", who was the one who lived this out most? It was her. And that is why wherever Jesus is revealed, His mother is already working. Wherever Jesus is gathering His family, He already has a mother prepared for His family. Wherever people believe, Mary is found. And the other way around, wherever Mary is and she shows herself, people will find faith and they become the family of Jesus, because they have Mary as a Mother and Jesus as a Brother and Master. They have found those two elements. This is the first thought I want to give to you about the Gospel.

And the second is in connection with the Old Testament reading of the book of Ezra. Brothers and sisters, are we aware of what incredibly happened at that time? The pagan king, Darius, the Persian King, decided to rebuild the temple of the Jewish people. He wanted to give them a home. He allowed the Jews to return to their country. The pagan king gave space to God. What does that mean? Why do we pray for peace in the world? We pray that we will find people of responsible position, politicians who have a sense for peace, who bother about peace like Darius. He was called by God, awakened by God to build peace.

Brothers and sisters, you remember Pope Francis prayed on that Sunday, at the prayer of the Angelus, that we should pray and fast for Syria. And what happened. Something incredible happened, A man without an army or weapons but with a heart that is filled with love for his neighbor had asked us to pray and fast so that the people in Syria can live in peace. And his appeal was heard by the whole world. This appeal was heard by many Muslims who joined and fasted at their mosques and they prayed. And it has changed history. Incredible! It seems that peace is more possible in this dramatic situation than it was three weeks ago.

All of you here, we are all called to pray for peace. But this also means that we have to pray concretely for all those responsible in politics that they refocus on the Word of God to guide them, that they will find the thought of peace and justice in their own hearts. Both, brothers and sisters, the prayer for peace, and the growth of God's family, will become fruitful wherever Our Lady is present. So we can also look with gratitude to Medjugorje, grateful that so many people, old and young, pray for peace in the world, and fast for peace in the world. We can be grateful that so many convert there and find access to the family of Jesus. And to Mary, the Mother of Jesus, the Mother of the family of Jesus, they find a very intimate relationship. That so many find their way back to the sacrament of Reconciliation. It is the biggest confessional of Europe, without doubt.

These words were given to me by the Gospel, the Word of God. But you all heard the Word of God and the Lord may have given you different interpretations. And I want to invite you, with the urgent invitation of Pope Benedict, to read the Gospel, to read it intensely and frequently. I almost want to say you have to chew it, to digest it, it has to become our blood and flesh, the Word of God. Pope Benedict said that the new evangelization will only come if we live newly from the Word of God. And I want to invite you with these small reflections to listen to your heart to what God tells us, day by day, so that God can guide you. The Divine lecture, the simple reading of God's Word, with the simple question, "Lord what do You want to tell me? What do You want to tell us today. Give us direction for our lives. This is what I want to invite you to, from the depth of my heart. (Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, At St. Stephen's Cathedral, September 24, 2013. Transcribed from the recording of Mary TV found at  Part 2 of the Vienna Event)

In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!
Cathy Nolan
©Mary TV 2013


 "Medjugorje is the spiritual center of the world!"   
Blessed John Paul II  -
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