His Word, Pope Francis and the Grace of His Light

His Word, Pope Francis and the Grace of His Light September 3, 2013

Can I tell you how happy I am that we’re back to the routine of Pope Francis sharing his daily homily from morning Mass in Rome? For me, my days simply go a bit better with his daily teachings on the gospel so readily available.

Today’s homily on Luke’s fourth chapter was just the shot in the arm I needed:

In his morning mass on Tuesday, Pope Francis said God is the light who saves us from the darkness. And God, he continued, has no need of an army to cast out the demons, he doesn’t need arrogance, strength or pride. What is there about His word? For with authority and power he commands the unclean spirits and they come out. This is a humble word, with so much love, it is a word that accompanies us in the moments of the Cross. Let us ask the Lord to give us today the grace of His light and teach us to distinguish when the light is from Him and when it is an artificial light, made by the enemy to deceive us.

L’Osservatore Romano Version of Homily

For many of us, today marks a “get back to business” mentality. My calendar — in big red letters — contains the words “Write Book”. That means that today is the day I’ve appointed to begin work on my next book. Can I tell you how stressed out I am? You’d think since I’ve done this a few times before, I wouldn’t feel this rising tide of panic, of “What the heck will I write?”

But reading today’s gospel and listening to Pope Francis reminds me that I’ve had my plans all based on the wrong perspective. The Holy Father’s teaching that, “He doesn’t need arrogance, strength or pride” underscores that those three words need not play any part in the project I’m launching today. If I base my work on “Lisa Power”, it’s sure to fail. If I turn the project over to the Source of that light, erasing my own ego from the process, it’s far more likely to come to fruition. Sure, he needs me to cooperate with the process and do the actual writing. But recalling why I do what I do gives me a more solid launching platform.

Over at CatholicMom.com, I share daily gospel reflections from Marianist priest Fr. Bertrand Buby. Today, a portion of Father Buby’s remarks seems aimed straight at me:

Like the people of Capernaum, we are to be spellbound by the power of Jesus’ words and his authority that comes deep from within his Godliness. He has been sent as the Apostle who brings us home through his redemptive love.  We are safe and free from anxiety when we become aware of his presence.  Without him we are restless, filled with anxiety, and fearful.  He who calmed the man who was disturbed by a demon can help us with getting rid of the demons of pessimism, doubts, and loneliness.  As the Psalm says, “We will see the good in the land of the living.”

Today, as we get back to business, back to school, back to the rush of real life, let’s be held spellbound by Jesus. Let’s be “safe and free from anxiety”. Let’s walk in the grace of his light.

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  • Patrice Fagnant-MacArthur

    Best of luck with the new project. I’m sure it will be wonderful!