27 January, Friday – Telling Life Stories

27 Jan – Memorial for St. Angela Merici, virgin

St. Angela Merici (1474-1540) became a Franciscan tertiary at the age of 15. She received a vision telling her that she would inspire devout women in their vocation.

In Crete, during a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, she was struck blind. Her friends wanted to return home, but she insisted on going on, visiting the shrines with as much devotion and enthusiasm as if she had her sight. On the way home, while praying before a crucifix, her sight was restored at the same place where it had been lost.

In 1535, she gathered a group of girl students and began what would become the ‘Institute of St. Ursula’ (the Ursuline Sisters), founded to teach children, beginning with religion and later expanding into secular topics; her first schools were in Desenazno and Brescia.

  • Patron Saint Index

Heb 10:32-39
Mk 4:26-34

..not the sort of people who draw back

I am quite sure many of us have heard the phrase ‘It is better to have tried and failed, than to never have tried at all’. I do not think that any of us would like to fail in any projects or any sort of work that we do. Successful people always share about their failures and wrong decisions, and then where they get to now is all due to the persistence in moving forward at what they do. Isn’t that all too familiar with today’s reading? We are reminded that the reward at the end of it all with God is great and we need endurance in doing God’s work here on earth.

In today’s disruptive and diversified environment, there are many challenges in keeping our faith strong and focused. Even when we are feeling dejected, alone and like a big failure, we should not draw back to hide in the hole. The only other worser situation would be to never grow from it, to never learn from it, and to let it remain unconquered. The pain and suffering Jesus endured for us, eventually dying on the cross, is pure strength in faith and loyalty to God the Father, to finish the will of the Father whatever and however He is to receive it.

We are to learn to express ourselves to others about our faith and strong belief in the best possible manner. Sometimes the way we understand the faith is not the way others see it. It takes time, focus and patience to bring a message to someone who does not believe in Christ. It is not just music, it is not just talks, it is not only about the Bible and so on. It takes the daily chores of the other person into consideration and to help them live the Bible. Jesus spoke to his disciples in parables because that is how they would be able to relate their lives with the works of our Lord. To convince someone a change of heart for the Lord is no easy task, it also requires a continuing prayer life, sensitive emotions, persistence and acceptance of failure.

(Today’s OXYGEN by Austin Leong)

Prayer: Only with your guidance O Lord, bless us with a strong mental and physical health, so that we continue to share Jesus with the world, living the Bible.

Thanksgiving: Thank you Lord, for getting me through each day, rejoicing when it is good, and gracing me with persistence and hope when it is bad.


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