July 11, 2020

Then I said, “Woe is me; I am doomed! I am a man of unclean lips…”

This famous passage from Isaiah ends with an angel cleansing Isaiah’s lips with a burning coal, and his responding to God’s asking for someone to go on mission. This is often used in vocational homilies or anniversaries of entry into religious life or priesthood. There are at least two lessons that leap out at us in this passage.

The first is a sense of profound unworthiness that we should feel in the presence of the Almighty. God is so completely other than we are, so far above anything that we can think or imagine. We are infinitely smaller and far less perfect than God. We are often sinful as well. And yet, God had loved us despite all this and even came into our world to reveal his care, his concern, and his love. We deserve none of this, but its reality has been brought home to us in Jesus and all he has done for us.

The second idea is, of course, being entrusted by God to do his work on earth. Despite our unworthiness, he sends us forth. This vocational compulsion began in baptism and confirmation. It is deepened each time we celebrate Eucharist. When we respond “amen” at communion time, this is more than an affirmation of our belief in the real presence of Christ in his eucharistic body and blood. It is our promise that everything that Jesus has done and hat he stands for, we are willing to commit ourselves to do. And Mass ends with our being sent forth to glorify God with our lives. We have much to be grateful for in God’s confidence in us.

How can I repay God’s trust in me today?

Let Us Pray:

“Whom shall I send?” I read in today’s reading. You have chosen me by baptism/ confirmation/Eucharist to continue your work here on earth. Give me the strength to follow that call. May everything I do advance the cause of your kingdom.


Daily Eucharistic Reflection – Center for Eucharistic Evangelizing (eucharisticevangelizing.com)
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About Paul J. Bernier, SSS

Blessed Sacrament Father Paul J. Bernier served for many years as the editor of Emmanuel. He is a popular writer, preacher, and director of retreats. Among his many published works is Ministry in the Church: A Historical and Pastoral Approach, Second Edition, published by Orbis Books in 2015. His most recent book is A Eucharistic Spirituality: Inspired by Saint Peter Julian Eymard – Apostle of the Eucharist, which he co-authored with Jim Brown.