A Preacher’s Life – Being a Guest

shepherd 1Today we celebrate the feast of Padre Pio.  Pope Francis is also on our shores.  As we said on Facebook, “Shepherd One has landed!”

In other words, it’s just another day at St Dominic’s.

Thinking about today’s readings at Mass, it is easy for us to contemplate how radical it was for Jesus to tell the Twelve to travel with hardly anything on their backs, no food, no water, no coin, nothing.

Yet today, let’s reverse the perspective.  What about we contemplate being on the receiving end of all these visitors?

alI cannot help but think of that little Syrian boy
found on the shore.  And indeed, considering that thousands of our brothers and sisters have been exiled from their homeland, I cannot help but feel compassion for those effected by ISIS.

I cannot help but think about Pope Francis’ visit to Cuba, as well as his visit to Washington, DC, New York, and Philadelphia.

In both cases, I cannot help but think about what it means to receive guests.  How generous are we, and how generous can we be?

Does it take Papal Stardom to allow us to open our doors and resources to give to the poorest and the needy?  Does it take the image of a deceased little boy by water’s edge to be generous?  What does it take for us to give of ourselves in Jesus’ name?  What drives us to be generous to others?  Tragedy?  The goodness of our hearts?  Guilt?

43When some think of Padre Pio, they think of the extraordinary graces that he had received—his stigmata and the many graces he had received in the confessional.  Yet what drew people to him was not what was on his hands.  What drew people to him was that he had recognized the suffering and the pain in people’s eyes—and he responded with saintly compassion.  Though some may have been attracted by Padre Pio’s wounds, what made him a saint was that he was another Christ, receiving the suffering and poor and provided for their needs.  Padre Pio was Christ for others, and he was rewarded with the wounds of the savior.

Padre Pio didn’t receive the stigmata in order to be Christ for the world—he received them because he was Christ for the world.

How generous are we?  How generous can we be?  We will never know who Jesus sends us on our way towards the heavenly kingdom.  Likely, he will send us people with no second tunic nor a walking stick.  Let us be generous.  Let us be Christ.

Holy Father Dominic, pray for us!


A Preacher’s Life – Being a Guest — 1 Comment

  1. Beautifully put!
    As one of those “crazy Catholic Rosary ruminator’s” may I say Padre Pio is a great source of strength in the days of ISIS. Hie quote, “I’m under attack! Bring me my weapon! Bring me ny ROSARY!” should be an inspiration to us all. Feeble in health, yet a lion in Faith.

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