Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Deacon Keith Fournier

2/10/2014 (10 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

They laid the sick in the marketplaces and begged him that they might touch only the tassel on his cloak; and as many as touched it were healed.

At every Holy Mass we encounter the same Lord, the same Living Word, the same Incarnate One who has been raised from the dead. Healing still flows from Him, through His Holy Word and in His Holy Body and Blood which we receive from the Altar at every Mass. When we receive Him with living faith, we are changed, made new and capacitated to live our lives differently now, in Him. This miraculous encounter, heaven touching earth, is available to each of us today. All that is asked of us is our assent, and our cooperation with grace. We can learn how to pray in such a way that we bring down that cloud of Glory. We not only touch the hem or tassel of His Cloak when we approach the Altar, we receive Him, Body,Blood, Soul and Divinity, into our very selves. Now, we are invited to become what we receive.

Benedict and Scholastica, brother and sister in both the natural and the supernatural order, invite us to learn the way of prayer.

Benedict and Scholastica, brother and sister in both the natural and the supernatural order, invite us to learn the way of prayer.

Highlights

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

2/10/2014 (10 months ago)

Published in Daily Homilies

Keywords: St. Scholastica, St. Benedict, Hagiogrpahy, lives of the saints, Bible, scripture, prayer, eucharist, Mass, Liturgy, discipleship, charismatic, Holy Spirit, Deacon Keith Fournier


CHESAPEAKE, VA (Catholic Online) - One of the great honors I have as a Deacon of the Catholic Church is to be able to proclaim the Gospel at Holy Mass and, when requested, to break open the bread of the Word of God for the faithful in a homily. This bread prepares us for the heavenly bread which we will receive from the Altar, the Most Holy Eucharist, the Body and Blood of the Lord.

The unbreakable connection between the first part of the Liturgy, the Liturgy of the Word and the second part, the Liturgy of the Eucharist is a bond which the Holy Spirit forges in a man or woman of living faith. At Holy Mass, the Divine Liturgy, we venerate both, because they connect us to the One Lord Jesus Christ, the living Word and the Living Bread. 

To venerate is to honor, to show deep respect, to defer to and to honor. Citing the Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation entitled ( The Word of God, Dei Verbum) of the Second Vatican Council, the Catechism of the Catholic Church reminds us that the Church has always venerated the Scriptures as she venerates the Lord's Body. She never ceases to present to the faithful the bread of life, taken from the one table of God's Word and Christ's Body. (CCC #103)

Our first reading today is taken from the Old Testament Book of Kings. We hear of the Ark of the Lords Covenant being brought from the City of David at the request of King Solomon. This Ark was venerated by the People of Israel because in it was deposited the ten words, the tablets, the Ten Commandments, through which God made a covenant with Israel. To be in its presence was to experience heaven touching earth. In an excerpt we read:

The priests brought the ark of the covenant of the LORD to its place beneath the wings of the cherubim in the sanctuary, the holy of holies of the temple. The cherubim had their wings spread out over the place of the ark, sheltering the ark and its poles from above. There was nothing in the ark but the two stone tablets which Moses had put there at Horeb, when the LORD made a covenant with the children of Israel at their departure from the land of Egypt. When the priests left the holy place, the cloud filled the temple of the LORD so that the priests could no longer minister because of the cloud, since the LORD's glory had filled the temple of the LORD. (I Kings 8)

Then, in our Gospel text from the Gospel of Mark, we read of another encounter with heaven touching earth. The Living Word, sent from heaven, the Word made flesh, the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, walked on the round of Gennesaret and people instinctively knew that heaven was touching earth. They brought the sick before the Lord, knowing that even touching the tassel on his cloak would bring healing and deliverance: 

After making the crossing to the other side of the sea, Jesus and his disciples came to land at Gennesaret and tied up there. As they were leaving the boat, people immediately recognized him. They scurried about the surrounding country and began to bring in the sick on mats to wherever they heard he was.Whatever villages or towns or countryside he entered, they laid the sick in the marketplaces and begged him that they might touch only the tassel on his cloak; and as many as touched it were healed. (Mk 6:53-56)

At every Holy Mass we encounter the same Lord, the same Living Word, the same Incarnate One who has been raised from the dead. Healing still flows from Him, through His Holy Word and in His Holy Body and Blood which we receive from the Altar at every Mass. When we receive Him with living faith, we are changed, made new and capacitated to live our lives differently now, in Him.

This miraculous encounter, heaven touching earth, is available to each of us today. All that is asked of us is our assent, and our cooperation with grace. We can learn how to pray in such a way that we bring down that cloud of Glory. We not only touch the hem or tassel of His Cloak when we approach the Altar, we receive Him, Body,Blood, Soul and Divinity, into our very selves. Now, we are invited to become what we receive.

In order to grasp this mystery and make it our own, the witness of our brothers and sisters in the faith can help us. They put legs on the faith for us. They show us with their lives how to respond. They help us with their intercession to tap into the same heavenly power which animated their own lives.

Today, we remember Scholastica, the sister of the Monk and Father of Western monasticism, Benedict. There is little about her in our patrimony. What we do know comes mostly from St Gregory the Great who writes concerning her in his Dialogues. Many accounts indicate that she was the twin sister of Benedict.

Like her brother, she was captured by Jesus Christ and responded heroically to His call to follow Him. She dedicated her entire life to embracing the evangelical counsels and founded a community of women who, like her, bore witness to heaven touch earth and called men and women to say Yes to God by their lived witness.

Once a year, after they both embraced the consecrated religious life, they would meet together, brother and sister both in both the natural and supernatural order. They would spend the day in prayer, read the scriptures and discuss the good things of the Lord. It is a wonderful testimony to what can happen in each of our own lives. Scholastica knew how to pray and we are invited to learn from her!

On this day of the memorial of Scholastica, I offer to you a beautiful excerpt of the last of these meetings between this brother and sister. It is taken from St Gregory the Great:

*****

From the books of Dialogues by Saint Gregory the Great, Pope: She Who Loved More Could Do More

Scholastica, the sister of Saint Benedict, had been consecrated to God from her earliest years. She was accustomed to visiting her brother once a year. He would come down to meet her at a place on the monastery property, not far outside the gate.

One day she came as usual and her saintly brother went with some of his disciples; they spent the whole day praising God and talking of sacred things. As night fell they had supper together.

Their spiritual conversation went on and the hour grew late. The holy nun said to her brother: "Please do not leave me tonight; let us go on until morning talking about the delights of the spiritual life." "Sister," he replied, "what are you saying? I simply cannot stay outside my cell."

When she heard her brother refuse her request, the holy woman joined her hands on the table, laid her head on them and began to pray. As she raised her head from the table, there were such brilliant flashes of lightning, such great peals of thunder and such a heavy downpour of rain that neither Benedict nor his brethren could stir across the threshold of the place where they had been seated.

Sadly he began to complain: "May God forgive you, sister. What have you done?" "Well," she answered, "I asked you and you would not listen; so I asked my God and he did listen. So now go off, if you can, leave me and return to your monastery."

Reluctant as he was to stay of his own will, he remained against his will. So it came about that they stayed awake the whole night, engrossed in their conversation about the spiritual life.

It is not surprising that she was more effective than he, since as John says, God is love, it was absolutely right that she could do more, as she loved more.

Three days later, Benedict was in his cell. Looking up to the sky, he saw his sister's soul leave her body in the form of a dove, and fly up to the secret places of heaven. Rejoicing in her great glory, he thanked almighty God with hymns and words of praise. He then sent his brethren to bring her body to the monastery and lay it in the tomb he had prepared for himself.

 Their minds had always been united in God; their bodies were to share a common grave.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for December 2014
Christmas, hope for humanity:
That the birth of the Redeemer may bring peace and hope to all people of good will.
Parents: That parents may be true evangelizers, passing on to their children the precious gift of faith.



Comments


More Daily Homilies

Thursday, December 18 - Homily: Take Her into Your Home Watch

Image of Like St. Joseph, Christians must not be afraid to take Mary into their homes and have an intimate spiritual life with Her.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Like St. Joseph, Christians must not be afraid to take Mary into their homes and have an intimate spiritual life with Her. continue reading


The Angel of the Lord Declared unto Joseph: The Angelus of Joseph and the Call to Men Watch

Image of The dream of Joseph. During what are often called the hidden years, because we have little in the Gospel text about them, Jesus was with Joseph and Joseph was with Jesus. Joseph uniquely participated in the mystery of Gods plan of redemption through simply being the man he was called to be. How challenging his witness is in an age of narcissism and inordinate self-love.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

Through the Fountain of living water called Baptism, the Father invites each one of us into His new family, the Body of His Son, the Church. He still gives His message and His mission to men who, like Joseph, cultivate ears to hear and then choose to exercise ... continue reading


Wednesday, December 17 - Homily: St. Matthew & Moses Watch

Image of St. Peter Damian, Doctor of the Church, explains that St. Matthew imitates Moses in writing the first Gospel and giving the geneology of Jesus Christ.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

St. Peter Damian, Doctor of the Church, explains that St. Matthew imitates Moses in writing the first Gospel and giving the geneology of Jesus Christ. continue reading


Tuesday, December 16 - Homily: Mt 21:28-32 The Parable of the Two Sons Watch

Image of In the season of Advent, awaiting the coming of Our Lord, let us examine ourselves in both our response to follow the Lord, and the fruits of charity that the Lord expects of us.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In the season of Advent, awaiting the coming of Our Lord, let us examine ourselves in both our response to follow the Lord, and the fruits of charity that the Lord expects of us. continue reading


Called into the Vineyard of the Lord in a New Missionary Age Watch

Image of

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Do we see the Church as Some-One, the Risen Christ truly present in His mystical Body, into whom we have been Baptized and now live? Do we, like those early believers, understand that to belong to Christ is to belong to His Body and seek to bring the whole world ... continue reading


Friday, December 12 - Homily: Our Lady of Guadalupe Watch

Image of To all of Her servants, Our Lady says,

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

To all of Her servants, Our Lady says, "Go and put all your efforts into this", regarding whatever task She gives us. But She never wants us to be frightened, distressed or upset, even in the face of failures, because She, who is our Mother, is here. We are ... continue reading


Thursday, December 11 - Homily: Sts. Damasus and John the Baptist Watch

Image of Fr. Elias on the life of Pope St. Damasus who, although was one of the first popes to not be martyred, went out of his way to promote the veneration of the martyrs.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Fr. Elias on the life of Pope St. Damasus who, although was one of the first popes to not be martyred, went out of his way to promote the veneration of the martyrs. One of these martyrs is St. John the Baptist who is mentioned today in the readings and is central ... continue reading


My Yoke is Easy and My Burden is Light Watch

Image of

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Our Gospel today is short, but profoundly important:  Jesus said: Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves. For ... continue reading


Wednesday, December 10 - Homily: Our Lady of Loreto Watch

Image of May Our Lady, like the fortress of Loreto, defend our Faith!

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

May Our Lady, like the fortress of Loreto, defend our Faith! continue reading


Tuesday, December 9 - Homily: St. Juan Diego Watch

Image of St. Juan Diego gives us an example of simplicity and humility.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

St. Juan Diego gives us an example of simplicity and humility. continue reading


All Daily Homilies News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Judges 13:2-7, 24-25
2 There was a man of Zorah of the tribe of Dan, ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 71:3-4, 5-6, 16-17
3 Be a sheltering rock for me, always accessible; you ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 1:5-25
5 In the days of King Herod of Judaea there lived a ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for December 19th, 2014 Image

St. Nemesius
December 19: Martyr of Egypt. He was burned alive in Alexandria, Egypt, ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter