St Monica | Thursday 27 August

Today is Thursday the 27 August, the feast of St Monica in the 21st week of Ordinary Time.

Ladysmith Black Mambazo sing: ‘We Nhliziyo yami’: ‘O my heart be wise when your enemies surround you. Keep praying; ask the Lord for help. For he is powerful. That is your weapon; do not lose it. Pray without ceasing, for the Lord is powerful.’

Today’s reading is from St Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians.

1 Corinthians 1:1-9

Paul, called to be an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, & our brother Sosthenes, To the church of God that is in Corinth, to those who are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, together with all those who in every place call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, both their Lord & ours: Grace to you & peace from God our Father & the Lord Jesus Christ. I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that has been given you in Christ Jesus, for in every way you have been enriched in him, in speech & knowledge of every kind— just as the testimony of Christ has been strengthened among you— so that you are not lacking in any spiritual gift as you wait for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ. He will also strengthen you to the end, so that you may be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful; by him you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Our reading today is from Paul’s First Letter to the community at Corinth.This is going to be a difficult letter for Paul to write. He is going to have to face and deal with a difficult situation. Faced with a difficult and challenging situation, Paul’s first and repeated thought is to turn to Jesus Christ. When I am faced with a difficult situation, where or to whom do I turn?

How do I try to deal with challenges that come my way? Do I rely on my own powers?

As you listen to the reading again, notice how many times the name of Jesus Christ occurs.

Paul encourages us to face whatever challenges us in the light of the cross of Christ and the love of Christ. As this time of prayer draws to a close, I turn to Jesus Christ and speak to him of the concerns and challenges I face today.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.