Today’s Gospel antiphon quotes the Letter of St. James, (1:21) :  ” Humbly welcome the WORD that has been planted in you and is able to save your souls.”

This reminds me of the recent words of our Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI when he spoke last Sunday during the Angelus from his balcony at  Castelgandolfo: 

“The words of Christ are very clear: they show no disdain for an active life, or for generous hospitality, but contain an evident reference to the fact that what is truly necessary is something else: to listen to the Word of the Lord.   And in that moment the Lord is there, present in the Person of Jesus.   All the rest will pass and be taken away from us, but the Word of God is eternal and gives meaning to our daily activities”.

   “This Gospel episode is highly appropriate for the holiday season because it recalls the fact that, although human beings must work and dedicate themselves to domestic and professional duties, above all they need God, Who is the inner light of Love and Truth.   Without love, even the most important activities become valueless and bring no joy. Without profound meaning, all our actions are reduced to sterile and disordered activism.

   “And who gives Love and Truth if not Jesus Christ?”  the Holy Father asked.   “Let us learn then, brothers and sisters, to help one another, to collaborate, but first and foremost together to chose the ‘better part’, which is and will always be our greatest good”.  (end of quote)

As the Holy Father teaches, Jesus Christ is the Word which we are to welcome into our hearts.  Jesus Christ is the Word who has the power to save us.  Let us not just be inspired by these words, these truths, but take the time as encouraged by our Holy Father to spend time in prayer that this WORD of GOD might dwell richly within us.

It may be helpful to spend some time reading the Fourth Pillar of the Catechism on Prayer.  It is very well written, and may help to inspire you in beginning a commitment to prayer, or in enriching your present practice of prayer.  And please, do not forget, that our highest form of prayer is the Eucharist; our regular attendance at Sunday Mass with the People of God.

I pray all of you are finding rest from your labors during these summer days.  I pray especially that all of you are growing ever closer to Jesus Christ, and through Him, with Him and in Him, growing in holiness!