A reflection on this Sunday’s Mass by Sr Kym Harris osb

A reflection on this Sunday’s Mass by Sr Kym Harris osb and downloaded from http://www.prayasyoucan.com.au)
This Gospel story witnesses to a tension in the life of Jesus, and one that we experience in our own: we can’t do everything. Being human involves being limited in time and in place. While our desires and hopes, not only for ourselves but for others may be as wide as the world, the reality is that we live one day at a time in our own particular body. Jesus, too, experienced that. He had moved out of Jewish territory because he needed space. On one hand, he had the religious authorities hounding him, picking up on his every word. On the other hand, he had the crowds clamouring for miracles – understandably, he was healing their sick. While miracles were a part of Jesus’ mission, they were not the core. The core of his mission was to call people to faith in God and his promises. Given the way everyone seemed to be missing the point, both he and the disciples needed space. So for the only time in his ministry, he leaves the land of Israel.

Then out comes this pagan woman, almost hysterically wanting a miracle. Jesus states that his personal calling is to the lost of the house of Israel. She has no problem with that, she is more than ready to acknowledge the primacy of his Jewish mission, but she still wants her daughter healed. Her passionate love for her daughter opens her to the possibilities within this person of Jesus: three times she calls him ‘Lord’; she names him ‘Son of David’; and she kneels to worship. No wonder Jesus seems blown away. This is the very faith that he was wanting – not even the disciples had come to see what she had recognised. Her commitment to her particular calling as mother, when brought before the person of Jesus, enhanced her faith. She returned home, just as Jesus returned to his land. In later life, how she must have wondered about this person, Jesus, who she had so exceptionally understood. A few moments in her life at the service of her daughter and her vision of reality was changed forever. Yes, our lives can seem to be confined by the particular, but with faith, they can reach beyond our imaginings!

The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Today, 15th August, we celebrate the Solemnity of The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Teaching of the Assumption of Mary became widespread across the Christian world, having been celebrated as early as the 5th century and having been established in the East by Emperor Maurice around AD 600. St. John Damascene records the following:

“St. Juvenal, Bishop of Jerusalem, at the Council of Chalcedon (451 AD), made known to the Emperor Marcian and Pulcheria, who wished to possess the body of the Mother of God, that Mary died in the presence of all the Apostles, but that her tomb, when opened upon the request of St. Thomas, was found empty; wherefrom the Apostles concluded that the body was taken up to heaven.”
From wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Assumption_of_Mary
[The image is of a stained glass window in the Church of Our Lady of the Children Nîmes Beausoleil France. (Hence all the children with wings.)]

Feast of Saint Mary of the Cross MacKillop

Today we celebrate the Feast of Saint Mary of the Cross MacKillop
The Sisters of St Joseph have lived among us since Sr Francis, Sr Lambert and Sr Joseph came in 1916.
In total 87 Sisters have served our Parish, generally two or three residing in the Convent which Fr Gallivan PP donated.
We also thank Sr Jose` who has been with us since 2011 and serves our parishioners with joy and care for which we are very grateful

A reflection by Sr Kym Harris osb

“The Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes. Basilica di Sant’ Apollinare Nuovo. Ravenna ITALY. 6th century. Public Domain from https://commons.wikimedia.org

A reflection on this Sunday’s Mass by Sr Kym Harris osb and downloaded from http://www.prayasyoucan.com.au)

The disciples must a really gulped when Jesus told them feed the crowds. They had so little in their hands and there were many, many people behind them. It must have felt like a long pause before Jesus took the food, blest it and started handing it back to them to take around…and he just kept on handing it out….quietly, simply a loaf, a fish at a time. It would have taken some time to feed so many and then even more time to collect what was left over. How must the disciples felt then. In that time of serving and collecting, they were being taught the most basic aspect of discipleship: trust in God.

We too often feel that God has placed us in situations that are beyond us. True, our miracles are not usually as extra-ordinary as the multiplication of the loaves but they are no less real. Virtually every person reading this can think of situations where they were challenged beyond their capabilities and where, with the grace of God, they rose to the occasion. Almost always, God’s grace was given quietly in an undramatic way. Just as at the feeding of the multitude, there was no fanfare but in their heart of hearts they knew God’s grace has carried them beyond their expectations.

It is important for us to recognise and remember these personal miracles. Many years ago, a wise man suggested that we carry these ‘moments of grace’ around with us, like stones in our pockets and in the spaces in our lives, the times of waiting, we can remember and ponder on them. I have found this an amazing exercise. What was one moment of God’s grace, one experience in the past, has often been multiplied over and continued to feed my spirit. The remembrance has renewed the miracle and helped me to continue to trust in God.