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Today's Prayer with the Pope

April 2014

O Jesus, I come before you at the beginning of this day. I gaze at your face, I look upon your side pierced by the lance. Your wounded heart speaks to me of God's love poured out for us. Take, Lord, and receive my heart: the words of faith that I speak, the works of justice I would do, my joys and sufferings.

When I come to the Eucharistic table, gather my offerings to your own for the life of the world and for the Pope's Intentions this month:

 

That governments may foster the protection of creation and the just distribution of natural resources.

 

That the Risen Lord may fill with hope the hearts of those who are being tested by pain and sickness.

This month's reflection

HOPE FOR THE SICK

That the Risen Lord may fill with hope the hearts of those who are being tested by pain and sickness.
One of the most famous efforts to make sense of suffering is found in the Book of Job. The author's considered opinion after all was said and done, is that suffering is a great mystery that God alone understands and before which he thought it wiser to remain silent.
It was only some centuries later that Jesus, by what he said and did, revealed the mind of God on the evils that beset us all. God hates sin but loves the sinner; He hates sickness but loves the sick; He hates death but loves the dying. Jesus is the One who delivers us, His sisters and brothers, from these evils. However, He does not wave a magic wand causing all our difficulties to disappear leaving us a totally passive role. He invites each of us to co-operate in our own salvation by sharing something, even if only a few splinters, of his heavy cross.
No one finds this easy. Not even St Paul himself. He begged over and over again to be delivered immediately from a painful ‘thorn in the flesh’. He learned the hard way, however, that none of us is tried beyond our strength. ‘My grace is sufficient for you’. It is for you and me too.
Bernard J McGuckian, SJ