27 May, Wednesday — Truth of the matter

May 27 – Memorial for St. Augustine of Canterbury, Bishop

Augustine (d. 605) was a monk and abbot of St. Andrew’s abbey in Rome. He was sent by Pope Gregory the Great with 40 brother monks, including St. Lawrence of Canterbury to evangelize the British Isles in 597. Before he reached the islands, terrifying tales of the Celts sent him back to Rome in fear, but Gregory told him he had no choice, so he went. He established and spread the faith throughout England; one of his earliest converts was King AEthelberht who brought 10,000 of his people into the Church.

He was ordained a bishop in Gaul (modern France) by the Archbishop of Arles. He became Bishop of Canterbury, and was the first Archbishop of Canterbury. He helped re-establish contact between the Celtic and Latin churches, though he could not establish his desired uniformity of liturgy and practices between them. He worked with St. Justus of Canterbury. The Anglican Archbishops of Canterbury are still referred to as occupying the Chair of Augustine.

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Acts 20:28-38
John 17:11-19

Consecrate them in the truth, your word is truth

Someone once remarked to me that truth is just a matter of perspective. That statement got me thinking because I have been brought up to believe that truth is objective. There can be no difference in the truths because it is found to be similar throughout the world. The readings of today remind me of the importance of always remaining faithful to Jesus and to not deviate away from his teachings.

Jesus prayed that we remain in the world. I always wondered why this is the case, especially since there is tremendous amount of pain which everyone is going through. Yet, I believe that Jesus gives us the strength to continue with the challenges which we face in our daily lives. He does not allow us to crumble but instead, grants us the Holy Spirit to strengthen and nourish us in the vocation which he has called us to do. Indeed Jesus does want us to believe in Him and with a belief that is grounded in truth.

The ways of the world can be very distracting for all of us. This is especially with the presence of social media platforms and other kinds of issues in life which take up a significant amount of our time. This period of COVID-19 has kept me at home for a good, significant part of my life, and it has made me realise that the noise in my head is much louder than that of the surroundings.

In the preparation towards Pentecost, let us discover what it means to re-connect to Jesus, the Truth. This would mean to spend time in prayer to ask Jesus to show us the way He desires of us, and for us to take to Him in prayer all the challenges and fears which we may have. In doing so, let us trust Jesus completely.

(Today’s Oxygen by Nicholas Chia)

Prayer: Jesus, I trust in You.

Thanksgiving: We give thanks for all who continue to provide a perspective of truth in our lives.

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