The Birthday of St John the Baptist | Monday 24 June
Today is Monday, the 24 June, the Feast of the Birth of St John the Baptist.
The monks of the Abbey of Keur Moussa sing the Benedictus: Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, He has visited his people and redeemed them. As I enter into prayer today, I rest for a moment in the confidence that - whatever may seem wrong with the world, or with me or with my life - God’s love redeems it all: ‘The Lord has visited his people and redeemed them’.
Today’s reading is from the Gospel of Luke.
Such a familiar story – the birth of John the Baptist. People rejoice with the new mother; but they also disapprove when they learn of the baby’s name. “None of your relatives has this name.” But both parents insist: His name is John. In the wake of all the strange events surrounding this new name, people ask, “What then will this child become?”
Has anyone ever asked that about you when you was a little baby – was anyone present at your naming curious about what you would become. What do you know about how you were named? What do you know about your own name? Do you even know what it means?
Hear again about John the Baptist – about his birth, his naming, his childhood. Imagine how the hand of the Lord was with this specially named child; imagine how he grew and became strong in spirit.
The child John “grew and became strong in spirit.” Spend these last moments reflecting on yourself as a child – a child of God, a named child of God. As memories come, let God know how they stir you now.