Lord, let me know clearly the work
you are calling me to do in life.
and grant me every grace I need
to answer your call with courage
and lasting dedication to your will.
With Mary and with the whole Church I pray especially for the Pope’s intentions this month:
That those involved in scientific research may serve the well-being of the whole human person.
That the unique contribution of women to the life of the Church may be recognized always.
At Baptism, we receive our Christian vocation – to be faithful to the message of the Gospel. There are no greater or lesser vocations. There seems to be a view that high valued contributions can only be made to the Church within the hierarchy, the priesthood and the decision-making body of the Church.
The story of Mary and Martha (Lk.10:38-42) proposes a different view. Jesus favours the nurturing, caring and social element of faith. This indeed is ‘the better part’ which women choose in every parish across the entire Church. It seems to be predominantly women who act as sacristans, sit on parish councils and assist their communities through faith-based organisations. Their unique contribution is the quiet strengthening of their local faith-based communities.
These women are the Marys of our parishes. They sit at the feet of Jesus, listening to Him and ‘being’ with him (Mk.3:14). This is discipleship and the living out of the simple Gospel message of love which sometimes gets complicated. It is this love that motivates women to assume nurturing roles in local parishes. Through their natural instinct to care, cherish and cultivate, women indeed can choose the ‘better part’. Let us recognise, as Jesus did, this unique contribution.
- Aisling English, extracted from Living Prayer