Monday, October 19, 2015

Memorial of Saints John de Brebeuf, Isaac Jogues, and companions, martyrs

(Romans 4:20-25; Luke 12:13-21)

Theresa lived ninety years close to God. She raised a large family and served at her parish first as a crossing guard for the school, then as the secretary and in various other capacities. Theresa, of course, regularly attended Mass and was considered by many as a trustworthy friend. Most everyone would like to have some of Theresa’s qualities whether it be her wisdom, her faith, or her care of others. Theresa today helps us understand some of the dynamics of faith.

We sometimes hear faith described as “blind” and entailing a “leap” into the unknown. These phrases have a limited value in describing what faith entails. There may be moments when faith seems like a blind or dubious choice, for example, when a martyr is called to renounce her faith or die. Also, faith does demand a leap or letting go of complete control of one’s life and trusting in God. But usually our faith is firmly based not only on the Gospel message but on the solid examples of saints like Teresa.

In the first reading today Paul assures us that faith will win God’s favor. When we believe that Christ died for our sins and God raised him for our justification, we will share in his glory. To be sure, the faith implied here is more than a nod of assent to various propositions about God. Rather, it involves discipleship of the Lord Jesus.