Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Eager To Do Good

Eager To Do Good

November 13, 2012
Memorial of Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini

By Beth DeCristofaro

For the grace of God has appeared, saving all and training us to reject godless ways and worldly desires and to live temperately, justly, and devoutly in this age, as we await the blessed hope, the appearance of the glory of the great God and of our savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to deliver us from all lawlessness and to cleanse for himself a people as his own, eager to do what is good.  (Titus 2:11-14)

(Jesus said) So should it be with you. When you have done all you have been commanded, say, ‘We are unprofitable servants; we have done what we were obliged to do.’” (Luke 17:10)


Jesus, my Lord and my Brother,  Help me to always recognize opportunities to do good.  May I eagerly practice the forgiveness, the unqualified love, the willingness to stop and hear what is in the heart of others like you did.   


This past weekend my husband and I celebrated the Fiftieth Anniversary of Ordination of a priest who has eagerly done what is good.  Abbot Oscar Burnett, OSB, was Campus Minister when we attended Belmont Abbey College.  My memories of him include a raucous, loud laugh, quick humor, gentle advice and a strong moral sense which often came into play as we brought problems and questions to him.  He invited us, with a commanding presence which was very hard to turn down, to join him in all sorts of charitable works and retreats even if we preferred sleeping in.  And “Big O” as we called him welcomed us to take frequent, active part in, not just be present at,  Mass.   He was one of several people who helped me realize that I had a spiritual life of my own which was and remains  a joyous discovery to this day.

Besides eagerly doing the work of God, Big O is a humble man.  During his remarks at the Anniversary Mass, he repeated that he, just like all of us present, is a weak and frail being.  But he also knows that, just like all of us, he is a beloved child of God and he lives his life in gratitude for the call to priesthood and the love offered to him by the many friends he has made throughout his life.

Service and gratitude sound as if it is a formula for eagerly doing  good.


Mother Frances Cabrini and Abbot Oscar Burnett have given their lives over to eagerly doing good.  At what points in your life can you identify the eagerness of doing good?  What prompted the eagerness?  Spend some time in prayer to ask for such a perspective on your day to day life.  What can you do to recreate that eagerness?  Is there someone who deserves your eagerness today?

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