June 27, 2020

Lord, I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof; only say the word and my servant will be healed.

These words, of course, were used to frame what we now say before receiving communion at Mass. They reflect the exquisite sensitivity of the centurion after asking Jesus to heal his servant. Not feeling worthy of having Jesus come to his home, and knowing the strictures about Jews entering houses of Gentiles, he had absolute trust in the ability of Jesus to cure his servant without even having to enter his house. Jesus, of course, rewarded him with the cure that he was looking for. This event caused Jesus to marvel at his faith and say, “Amen, I say to you, in no one in Israel have I found such faith.”

Isn’t it ironic that those who should have been expected to have this kind of deep faith were found wanting, while a pagan was so totally open to God’s actions in his life? We in the church tend to think of ourselves as the chief recipients of God’s grace and look askance at those who do not share our faith. Yet, the centurion and those like him often put us to shame with the openness they have to God in their lives. Does this phrase of the centurion that we utter before communion come from a deep sense of unworthiness on our part, unworthiness to be given the gift of receiving Christ himself body and soul at Mass? Or do we think that we deserve this gift? Do we have a deep sense of gratitude for what Jesus has done for us?

Today, let us reflect on this passage in relation to the depth of our own faith.

Let Us Pray:

O Lord, let the profession of unworthiness that I say each day resonate what I genuinely feel in my heart. May it deepen more and more when I come to your altar.


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.