Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Speak God's Word

Speak God’s Word

August 14, 2012

Memorial of Saint Maximilian Mary Kolbe, Priest and Martyr

By Beth DeCristofaro

It was then I saw a hand stretched out to me, in which was a written scroll which he unrolled before me.  It was covered with writing front and back, and written on it was:  Lamentation and wailing and woe!  He said to me: Son of man, eat what is before you; eat this scroll, then go, speak to the house of Israel.  So I opened my mouth and he gave me the scroll to eat.    I ate it, and it was as sweet as honey in my mouth.  (Ezekiel 8:9-10, 3:1-2, 43)

(Jesus said) "Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven.  Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven.  And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me.  (Matthew 18:


Lord, you inflamed St. Maximilian with love of the Immaculate Virgin and filled him with zeal for souls and love for neighbor.  Through his prayers, grant that we may work strenuously for your glory in the service of others and so be made conformable to your Son until death.


St. Maximilian willingly asked for and ate of the scroll on which was written lamentation and woe when he volunteered to die for a man condemned to death.  A prisoner of the Nazis in Auschwitz, he freely took the place of a family man in the starvation chamber where for three weeks he prayed, encouraged other condemned prisoners and celebrated Mass.  Finally he was murdered.  He willingly took on the sacrifice because he was so childlike in trust and dependent on the love of God, just as Jesus described the humility of a child.  St. Maximilian knew that the Nazi’s could kill his body but not touch his soul, and he also knew that acts of charity and good triumph over evil and speak God’s glory to the world. 


Maximilian acted as if he heard God’s words to Ezekiel addressed to him:  He said: Son of man, go now to the house of Israel, and speak my words to them. (Ezekiel 8:4)  Out of torment and faith, God’s words were spoken and resound today.  Do our actions speak God’s word?

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