Thursday, January 22, 2015

Divine Intercessor

By Beth DeCristofaro

Jesus is always able to save those who approach God through him, since he lives forever to make intercession for them. (Hebrews 3:25)

Jesus withdrew toward the sea with his disciples. A large number of people followed from Galilee and from Judea. … He had cured many and, as a result, those who had diseases were pressing upon him to touch him. (Mark 3:7, 10)

Father and maker of all,
you adorn all creation
with splendor and beauty,
and fashion human lives
in your image and likeness.
Awaken in every heart
reverence for the work of your hands,
and renew among your people
a readiness to nurture and sustain
your precious gift of life.
Grant this through our Lord
Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in
the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God forever and ever.   Amen

Years ago on a frigid, wet January day, I marched with thousands of others in one of the first March for Life marches held in D.C.  Frankly, I was disgusted and appalled.  There were counter demonstrations which included shouting, angry protesters and people dressed in “bloody” robes yelling at the “ignorance” of us marchers.  That was pretty awful.  But more distressing to me were the offensive and hateful shouts at them by many Catholic marchers around me.  Then, the first speakers at the rally used vile, ugly language, threatening the protesters and politicians who were pro-choice.  I had to wonder where respect for life was during that “Respect for Life” assembly.

I believe Jesus would love the words from today’s prayer just as I do:  “Awaken in every heart reverence for the work of your hands”.  St. Paul reminds us he lives forever to make intercession for them.  Jesus was the Word and the Truth and he respected the dignity of human life, offering intercession for thieves, adulterers and publicans.  He asks no less of us.  In our zeal for even the most principled and precious of values we are tasked not to hate and disrespect.  We are asked to meet sin with faith-steeped strength in God and pacifism powered by the stillness of God within.  Our zeal, if rooted in love, will not lead us to disrespect others who are also created in His image.  But our zeal, if rooted in love, can create not destroy and can move mountains.

In what way can I support the cause of right to life for the Unborn but also the poor, trafficked, refugee, seriously ill, disabled, underinsured, marginalized, forgotten, single parent, mentally ill, collateral damaged, incarcerated, unemployed, oppressed, anyone who longs for intercession and healing touch? 

Take a few minutes to read about the philosophy of “the seamless garment” spoken about by activist Eileen Egan and Joseph Cardinal Bernadin.  Rejoice in the work of God’s hands you will see around you today.

No comments: