Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

First Scripture Reading
Ezekiel 2: 2-5
Second Scripture Reading
2 Corinthians 12: 7-10
Gospel Reading
Mark 6: 1-6

Opening Prayer

Powerful, Embracing God, it’s hard to place my weakness in Your hands. I want to bring You my successes. But You have humbled me that I might learn to depend on Your awesome strength and faithful love. Your grace is more than sufficient, even though I want to be self-sufficient and sometimes get scared. Continue to breathe Your Spirit into me to free my heart. Brighten the hardened cynicism of my face and soften my obstinate heart. Empower me not to take people for granted, especially the ones I am closest to. Let not familiarity breed contempt. The people of Nazareth were not open to the specialness, wisdom and power of Jesus because they thought they knew him so well. Help us not miss the mystery of the special people who are most familiar in my life. Yes, brighten my hard face and soften my obstinate heart with a smile at the surprises I’ve taken for granted. Keep me open to your presence in familiar and mysterious people and places. Heal me today, Gentle, Powerful Jesus!

Therese, this must have been a dark day for you, when in 1897, the decision was made to isolate you in the infirmary because of the accelerating rate of your illness. You must have known that God was drawing you closer to home. Help us to have faith amid the dark times of pain, disappointment and illness — to trust that your refining and embracing presence is still with us, even though we feel empty. Strengthen our faith, powerful Therese, to believe that in our frailty is God’s mercy and healing power.

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