Memorial of Saint Pio of Pietralcino
In today’s gospel reading, Jesus sends his apostles out on their own to proclaim the kingdom of God. He gives them power over demons and power to cure the sick. He tells them that he has given them all they need, and they don’t need to take any extra possessions with them. In the reading from Galatians, Paul prays that God will give him neither riches nor poverty, only what he needs.
Today we celebrate the feast of a twentieth-century Italian Capuchin who is popularly known as Padre Pio. He was a simple man who, in 1918, was granted the gift of the stigmata, and he suffered the pain of these wounds willingly for the rest of his life. He virtually never left his monastery, but pilgrims flocked there daily to attend his Mass, go to him for confession and ask him to pray for them.
While I was reflecting on what to write about this holy man, I received a package from the Padre Pio Association requesting a donation. Along with the request, I received a pair of socks with the words, “Pray, Hope and Don’t Worry,” which I later learned was Padre Pio’s mantra and motto.
I wonder if the sentiments in this phrase undergirded how he dealt with those who came to him for confession. It expresses so much of what is at the heart of the kingdom which the apostles were sent to proclaim. It should also speak deeply to us as we anxiously deal with the disruption caused by the Coronavirus. We do need to pray and ask that in the face of this evil, we have hope in the God who loves us and then cast aside our anxieties.
Let’s spend some time today reflecting on this very short but powerful mantra.
Let Us Pray:
Creator God, you continue to raise up among us women and men who have experienced at a very profound level your love for us. Their lives are a beacon drawing us ever deeper into the mystery of your love and mercy. May this cloud of witnesses awaken in our hearts a desire to respond to you in loving service of others. We ask this through Christ. Amen.
Daily Eucharistic Reflection – Center for Eucharistic Evangelizing (eucharisticevangelizing.com)
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