Suddenly a violent storm came up on the sea, so that the boat was being swamped by waves; but he was asleep. They came and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We are perishing!’ He said to them, “Why are you terrified, O you of little faith?” (Matthew 8:24-26)
In the light of recent history, all of us can, I believe, more readily identify with today’s gospel about a powerful storm battering the boat in which Jesus and his disciples are making their way across the sea, and the terror, his followers, feel because of the strength of the winds and the waves.
A few short months ago, Covid-19 seemed like a distant threat, not the relentless pandemic that has gripped much of the world and changed the way we live. Nor were we sensitive to the suffering and pain of many of our brothers and sisters due to systemic racism, made clear by the tragic death of George Floyd.
Amid all that they are experiencing, the disciples go to Jesus and say, “Lord, save us! We are perishing!” Their cries of anguish are like those of so many in our day. Christ hears us in our fears and our anxieties; he has not forsaken his people in perilous times.
The Church remembers just such a time in her liturgy today. In the year 64, when Emperor Nero attributed the disastrous fire that leveled much of the city to its Christian minority, it set off years of persecution that resulted in the torture and death of innocent people. The courage of the First Martyrs of the Holy Roman Church inspires believers to this day.
Pray for those who are overwhelmed with fear in moments of trial and difficulty.
Let us pray:
God, when we face danger and evil, may we hear the reassuring voice of your Son and find strength in his presence in our midst. Amen.
Daily Eucharistic Reflection – Center for Eucharistic Evangelizing (eucharisticevangelizing.com)
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