05 July 2016
Tuesday, 14th Week in Ordinary Time
St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria, Priest
Hos 8:4 -7, 11 – 13 / Mt 9:32 – 38
Born in Cremona, Italy, St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria (1502 – 1539) had studied medicine but became a priest. He founded the Congregation of Clerks Regular of St. Paul (Barnabites, 1533) for the purpose of reform of the clergy and the laity; he also founded a congregation for women,
Gospel Reading: Mt 9: 32 - 38
When they had just left, some people brought to Jesus a man who was dumb because he was possessed by a demon. When the demon was driven out, the dumb man began to speak. The crowds were astonished and said, "Nothing like this has ever been seen in Israel." (But the Pharisees said, "He drives away demons with the help of the prince of demons.")
Jesus went around all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the good news of the Kingdom, and he cured every sickness and disease. When he saw the crowds he was moved with pity, for they were harassed and helpless like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, "The harvest is abundant but the workers are only few. Ask the master of the harvest to send workers to gather his harvest."
The Gospel reading tells us how Jesus was moved with pity, seeing how the crowds were harassed like sheep without a shepherd. Very often Jesus is portrayed as a shepherd taking care of sheep. We are the sheep that the Lord tends to. But oh, how much easier it would be to take care of us sheep if only we were as docile and obedient to the Good Shepherd.
In reality, we are rowdy, divisive, unruly, arrogant, selfish and egotistical - very different from how sheep are. But Jesus chooses to see the best in us and he persists to tend to us as the Good Shepherd, even if we are beset with much blindness and selfishness.
Have we made it easy for the Lord to tend to us? Have we been obedient and cooperative with him? Or have we persisted to being the perennial lost sheep that he continually goes out of his way to bring back to the fold, again and again?
Perhaps we have been both. What is important is that we always remain with the Good Shepherd.
At the end of today's Gospel, Jesus tells his disciples that there are not enough workers to attend to the harvest, that is, the harvest of attending to the multitudes of God's people in the crowds and in the peripheries.
Christ poses this challenge to us also: not only to pray for more workers to follow the example of the Good Shepherd, but to be shepherds ourselves emulating the example of Christ. We, too, can be of service to Christ the Good Shepherd, in our families, in our places of work and ministry, and in the different circles we inhabit.
WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:
Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.
Have a good day!
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