Meditation is an ideal way to pray. Using God's word (Lectio Divina) allows me to hear, listen and reflect on what the Lord wants to say to me - to one of his disciples - just like He did two thousand years ago.
The best time to reflect is at the beginning of the day and for at least 15 to 30 minutes.
Prior to going to sleep, read the Mass readings for the next day and then, in the morning, reflect on the Meditation offered on this website.
I hope these daily meditations allow you to know, love and imitate the Lord in a more meaningful way.
God bless you!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Luke 2:41-51 Patience Is A Virtue

Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of Mary
Each year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the feast of Passover, and when he was twelve years old, they went up according to festival custom.  After they had completed its days, as they were returning, the boy Jesus remained behind in Jerusalem, but his parents did not know it…  After three days they found him in the temple…His mother said to him, “Son, why have you done this to us?”  …He said to them, “Why were you looking for me?  Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?” …His mother kept all these things in her heart.
Today we celebrate the immaculate heart of Mary.  But what exactly does that mean?  Well, based on today’s Gospel passage, it definitely means to have a patient heart.
Of course it includes so much more than that.  After all, we all know (and believe) that Mary was a woman full of grace and full of virtue.  She is and will always be the Mother of God and of all Christians as well.  She is the most model par excellence of Christian living.
Now patience is a virtue, and arguably the most important virtue of our times.  Patience is absolutely necessary in times of economic and political strife.  Christians have always been known to be patient with sinners.  Parents must learn to be patient with their children.  We all know that patience is a virtue that pays off in the long run.    
In today’s Gospel passage, we read how the child Jesus ran off on his own.  How many of us would not have the sudden urge to yell at him, grab him by the arm, and yank him out of his socks (Did they wear socks back then???). 
Mary’s attitude is one of holy patience.  The question is:  What does patience mean?
Patience means to be humble.     Patience is another word for humility.  Yes, humility.  For when we are patient with others, we are reminded of ourselves through them.  We cannot be quick to judge.  We cannot be quick to condemn.  Instead, we must be quick to ask.  Son, why have you done this to us?  What a brilliant question.  Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?  What an insightful answer!
If Mary was patient towards others, then all the more reason for us to be as well! Mary was not a sinner.  We are.  And God forbid that we forget that.  Patient people do not forget that.  They do not forget that when they see others with a lead foot.  They do not forget that when they see their errors reflected in the eyes, mouths and actions of their children.  They don’t.  We shouldn’t either. 
Our world lacks patient people today because it has done a “wonderful” job eliminating any sense of personal sin.  After all, “Winning takes care of everything.” 
Right Tiger?  Right Lance?  Actually, let’s be honest.  It’s more like “Right Nike?” 
Patience means to have hope.  Patient people hope in God.  They know whatever difficulty they are going through that even this “shall pass.”  Patient people hope in the Lord.  Love conquers all things.  So, the only thing left to do is to never stop loving or lose hope. 
Not only do Christians (patient people) hope in God, they also give hope in others.  When we have patience towards others, it means we bring hope to them.  We believe in them.  We let them know that they can be better.  We let them know that they can do much better.  Without uttering a word, patient people tell others:  “You’re better than this.”  And they appreciate it.
Mary kept all these things in her heart.  Why?  Because she hoped in the Lord.  If she did not understand something, she trusted in the Lord.  If she did not see something, she believed in the Lord.  Mary kept all these things in her heart, and slowly, but surely, she began to understand them one by one. 
Patience is the key to unlocking the mysteries of God…and of life and death. 


  1. Please forgive my stupidity and selfishness. I am only considering my point of view and what “I” need to do. I am not considering that you would take it that I am preaching to you. I am so messed up that I am not even thinking properly anymore. I am all over the place!

    About 10 years ago I was in a dark place too, with different circumstances. No one could help me. No one. When people tried to help, they only made matters worse. I withdrew from the world. My family and friends thought I had lost it….and I had – literally. I was past being mad at God – there was no God in my life to be angry with. I couldn’t pray. It’s not that I did not want to – I just ‘could not’ pray.

    The reason I tell you all this is so that you may know – I DO understand! I know you are in a dark place! As my family and friends tried to help me, their words only brought me to a darker place, as I am doing to you. I could only go through this Hell by myself. That was how it was planned. That was the only way out.

    My presence is only intensifying this cross for you. Because I have gone through something similar, I thought I could help you. But I am so selfish in this way of thinking! Please believe me when I say with all the Love in me: You have to walk through this door alone. This cross is your salvation. My trying to help you will only prolong this agony.

    I am not leaving you even though it may seem like I am. You KNOW I will continue to pray my heart out for you, everyday, all day. You may not see it in yourself, but you are transforming into Christ. It’s just that His path hurts.

    If you can carry this cross until the end, in whatever God wants, you will find Paradise here on earth that no one can ever take from you!! Yes, you will still have the ups and downs, unanswered questions and temptations, but you will have such a strong presence of Jesus within every cell of your body that you will KNOW that you can persevere in every circumstance! (I don’t mean to preach to the choir but it is so very true! I have experienced it!)

    I care too much for you to watch you lose your spirit in a slow and painful way. By my absence, you will eventually find the peace that only comes from Him. You know you are my ‘enormous blessing’! I love you so very much dear brother. Words are not enough.

  2. Father,

    Of all your meditations, this one is the one I have been reflecting on for so very long. It is truly what I need the most right now - patience.

    Your words have been such an inspiration to me. I know that your words of wisdom can only come from living the cross. Thank you for helping me see what can come from embracing my cross.

  3. A great reflection Father Alfonse.

    Patience means to have hope.  Patient people hope in God.  They know whatever difficulty they are going through that even this “shall pass.”  Patient people hope in the Lord. 

    Now that I can admit and objectively see that I am not only a people pleaser but also a very selfish person, I can try to catch myself in the act and become more conscious to change.

    Jesus has given me so many opportunities to change and I have always told Him, ‘wait - just a little while longer…. it will all work out - everyone will win! You’ll see Jesus.’ Now I know that I need to only trust Him….again.

    Psalm 118:8

    “Mary kept all these things in her heart.” I also trust that by pondering the many blessings that I have received over these past few years, God will reveal to me many more insights, more graces to bring me closer to Him. I am so very grateful to Him for having allowed me these experiences. He is never outdone in generosity, regardless of my mistakes and sins.

    The Eucharist is my only nourishment. The cross is my only good. What a magnificent God we have! What a magnificent Church we have!


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