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Sts. Cornelius and Cyprian

Lk 7: 1-10

After Jesus had finished all his sayings in the hearing of the people, he entered Capernaum. A centurion there had a slave whom he valued highly, and who was ill and close to death. When he heard about Jesus, he sent some Jewish elders to him, asking him to come and heal his slave. When they came to Jesus, they appealed to him earnestly, saying, “He is worthy of having you do this for him, for he loves our people, and it is he who built our synagogue for us.” 

And Jesus went with them, but when he was not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to say to him, “Lord, do not trouble yourself, for I am not worthy to have you come under my roof; therefore I did not presume to come to you. But only speak the word, and let my servant be healed. For I also am a man set under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes, and to my slave, ‘Do this,’ and the slave does it.” 

When Jesus heard this he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd that followed him, he said, “I tell you, not even in Israel have I found such faith.” When those who had been sent returned to the house, they found the slave in good health.

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.

 

Humbled by an encounter with Jesus

I have to admit, I don’t love the idea of the centurion being held up as an example of great faith in God in Luke’s Gospel today. The centurion represents empire and oppression, things that Jesus fights hard against. Jesus himself is surprised to find such humility and faith from such an unlikely source.

However, Jesus’s response to the centurion’s humble plea is not an endorsement of Roman power, but rather a demonstration of the vastness of God’s power. I have to imagine that the centurion was profoundly changed by this encounter with Jesus, even though there is no evidence that they actually met one-on-one.

How can we allow our encounter with Jesus to change and humble us? At Mass we say the words “Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.” Do we truly believe that?

Christine Dragonette is the Director of Social Ministry at St. Francis Xavier College Church in St. Louis.

 

Prayer

God our Father, in Saints Cornelius and Cyprian you have given your people an inspiring example of dedication to the pastoral ministry and constant witness to Christ in their suffering. May their prayers and faith give us courage to work for the unity of your Church. Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

—Collect Prayer from today’s Mass

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The Holy Father’s Monthly Prayer Intentions
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DAILY INSPIRATION

September 16, 2019

Scripture

Sts. Cornelius and Cyprian

Lk 7: 1-10

After Jesus had finished all his sayings in the hearing of the people, he entered Capernaum. A centurion there had a slave whom he valued highly, and who was ill and close to death. When he heard about Jesus, he sent some Jewish elders to him, asking him to come and heal his slave. When they came to Jesus, they appealed to him earnestly, saying, “He is worthy of having you do this for him, for he loves our people, and it is he who built our synagogue for us.” 

And Jesus went with them, but when he was not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to say to him, “Lord, do not trouble yourself, for I am not worthy to have you come under my roof; therefore I did not presume to come to you. But only speak the word, and let my servant be healed. For I also am a man set under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes, and to my slave, ‘Do this,’ and the slave does it.” 

When Jesus heard this he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd that followed him, he said, “I tell you, not even in Israel have I found such faith.” When those who had been sent returned to the house, they found the slave in good health.

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.

 


Ignatian Reflection

Humbled by an encounter with Jesus

I have to admit, I don’t love the idea of the centurion being held up as an example of great faith in God in Luke’s Gospel today. The centurion represents empire and oppression, things that Jesus fights hard against. Jesus himself is surprised to find such humility and faith from such an unlikely source.

However, Jesus’s response to the centurion’s humble plea is not an endorsement of Roman power, but rather a demonstration of the vastness of God’s power. I have to imagine that the centurion was profoundly changed by this encounter with Jesus, even though there is no evidence that they actually met one-on-one.

How can we allow our encounter with Jesus to change and humble us? At Mass we say the words “Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.” Do we truly believe that?

Christine Dragonette is the Director of Social Ministry at St. Francis Xavier College Church in St. Louis.

 


Prayer

God our Father, in Saints Cornelius and Cyprian you have given your people an inspiring example of dedication to the pastoral ministry and constant witness to Christ in their suffering. May their prayers and faith give us courage to work for the unity of your Church. Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

—Collect Prayer from today’s Mass

THE POPE'S PRAYERS

Pray with the Pope

The Holy Father’s Monthly Prayer Intentions Brought to you by Apostleship of Prayer the first Friday of each month.

DAILY EXAMEN

The Daily Examen is a prayer technique developed by St. Ignatius to help us reflect on the events of the day to discern God’s presence and direction. When Ignatius founded the Society of Jesus, he required the Jesuits to practice the Examen twice daily—at noon and at the end of the day. It’s a habit that Jesuits, and many other Christians, practice to this day.

The Examen structure presented below is adapted from a technique described by Ignatius Loyola in his Spiritual Exercises. Click here for more information from our partners in ministry at Loyola Press.

Daily Examen

1. Become aware of God’s presence

God, I believe that at this moment I am in your presence and you are loving me.

2. Review the day with gratitude

God, you know my needs better than I know them. Give me your light and your help to see how you have been with me, both yesterday and today.

3. Pay attention to your emotions

God, help me to be grateful for the moments when people have affirmed me and challenged me. Help me to see how I have responded, and whether I have been kind to others and open to growth.

4. Choose one feature of the day and pray from it

God, forgive me for when I have not done my best or have failed to treat others well. Encourage me, guide me, and continue to bless me.

5. Look toward tomorrow

As I look to the remainder of this day, make me aware that you are with me. Show me how to be the person you want me to be.

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