Then Jesus went from that place and withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. And behold, a Canaanite woman of that district came and called out, "Have pity on me, Lord, Son of David! My daughter is tormented by a demon." But he did not say a word in answer to her. His disciples came and asked him, "Send her away, for she keeps calling out after us." He said in reply, "I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel." But the woman came and did him homage, saying, "Lord, help me." He said in reply, "It is not right to take the food of the children and throw it to the dogs." She said, "Please, Lord, for even the dogs eat the scraps that fall from the table of their masters." Then Jesus said to her in reply,
"O woman, great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish." And her daughter was healed from that hour.
Creeds are brief formulas of faith that make it possible for all believers to make a common profession. (185-188, 192-197)
Brief formulas of this kind can be found already in the letters of St. Paul. The early Christian Apostles' Creed has a special dignity, because it is thought to be a summary of the faith of the apostles. The Nicene Creed is highly esteemed because it resulted from the great councils of the Church when Christendom was still undivided (Nicaea, 325; Constantinople, 381) and is to this day the common basis for the Christian in the East and the West.
It is the faith that saves, no matter how tiny it is, for God never abandons us. Longing for Christ is infinite, but begging for him is divine. For to recognize him in his divine intervention between heaven and earth is a sign of deeply rooted faith. Never lose your faith, for if you do, you lose your sight. The Lord challenges us to turn our gaze to him and to trust in him completely. To live in love, peace, hope and confidence is the mission of Christ, in which we as believers share.
Then Pharisees and scribes came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said, "Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? They do not wash their hands when they eat a meal." He summoned the crowd and said to them, "Hear and understand.
It is not what enters one's mouth that defiles that person; but what comes out of the mouth is what defiles one."
Then his disciples approached and said to him, "Do you know that the Pharisees took offense when they heard what you said?" He said in reply, "Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted. Let them alone; they are blind guides of the blind. If a blind person leads a blind person, both will fall into a pit."
God wills "all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth" (1 Tim 2,4). The "kingdom of God" begins in those who allow themselves to be transformed by God's love. In Jesus' experience these are above all the poor and the lowly. (541-546, 567)
Even people unaffiliated with the Church find it fascinating that Jesus, with a sort of preferential love, turns first to those who are socially marginalized. In the Sermon on the Mount, it is the poor and the sorrowing, the victims of persecution and violence, all those who seek God with a pure heart, all who seek his mercy, his justice, and his peace, who have prior access to the kingdom of God. Especially invited are sinners also: "Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick; I came not to call the righteous, but sinners" (Mk 2,17).
St. James said: "Therefore, brothers and sisters, bear with patience... make your hearts strong, for the coming of the Lord is at hand. " (Jam 5,7) I also feel God calling me to be patient in my family, in my job and with myself, especially during the COVID-19 situation. I trust in God, because I know: He always directs everything toward the good.
Then he made the disciples get into the boat and precede him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. After doing so, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When it was evening he was there alone.
Meanwhile the boat, already a few miles offshore, was being tossed about by the waves, for the wind was against it.
During the fourth watch of the night, he came toward them, walking on the sea. When the disciples saw him walking on the sea they were terrified. "It is a ghost," they said, and they cried out in fear. At once Jesus spoke to them, "Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid." Peter said to him in reply, "Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water." He said, "Come." Peter got out of the boat and began to walk on the water toward Jesus. But when he saw how strong the wind was he became frightened; and, beginning to sink, he cried out, "Lord, save me!" Immediately Jesus stretched out his hand and caught him, and said to him, "O you of little faith, why did you doubt?" After they got into the boat, the wind died down. Those who were in the boat did him homage, saying, "Truly, you are the Son of God." After making the crossing, they came to land at Gennesaret. When the men of that place recognized him, they sent word to all the surrounding country. People brought to him all those who were sick and begged him that they might touch only the tassel on his cloak, and as many as touched it were healed.
Someone who practices fortitude perseveres in his commitment to the good, once he has recognized it, even if in the extreme case he must sacrifice even his own life for it. (1809, 1837)
Do you know the feeling of having been shaken so much that you feel far from the love of the heavenly Father? That's how I felt in my sophomore year. I felt like the waves were swallowing me up and that I couldn't go any farther. When I finally managed to grasp the hand of the Father inwardly, I suddenly felt no more fear. Rather, I felt that I could rest in his strength in the middle of the storm, and that he was carrying me onwards where my own feet would have failed. I experienced him as a heavenly Father, who is faithful to me, even on difficult paths. Thank you, Father!
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