One Monk of the Order of Saint Benedict

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The Word of God and the Body of God reveal each other -- the homily worships both.

September 22, 2006

For Friday of the Twenty-Fourth Ordinary Week of the Church Year

Luke 8:1-3

In the Lord’s Gospel, there are certain women who follow him with integrity, piety, faith, love and steadfastness.
With their own money, these faithful women provide for the needs of Christ and his twelve apostles.
They do this for as many as three years while the Lord goes about the country teaching and saving.
When the twelve apostles run away at the arrest of the Master, the faithful women follow him to the cross.
The faithful women alone go to the tomb to finish his burial rites.
After the Lord rose from the dead and ascended into heaven, the same faithful women, who had already risked everything, likely continued to be benefactors of his infant Church.
They likely were among the first to sell all their possessions and hand over to the apostles the income for distribution among the faithful who had need.
What moved these women to be faithful in following Christ?
The Gospel introduces them today as women the Master has healed of evil spirits and infirmities.
The Gospel does not tell us that the Lord healed any of the twelve apostles of any evil spirits or any infirmities.
The faithful women had personal experience of Christ as SAVIOR.
He SAVED them personally from evil spirits and infirmities.
The twelve apostles witnessed the saving and healing power of Christ.
The faithful women experienced it firsthand.
Firsthand experience would come to the apostles later.
Rising from the dead, Christ made peace with the apostles, forgiving them their unfaithfulness and breathing into them the Spirit and the authority to save others from sin.
The apostles finally lived out their lives for Christ, and gave their lives for Christ.
The twelve apostles and the holy women together show us faith in Christ and faithfulness to Christ.
Christ is Healer, Savior, Lord, Lawgiver, Teacher, Lover of Humanity, Son of the Father, Bearer of the Spirit.
As we worship him at his altar of sacrifice, resurrection and communion, we recall the faithful women who followed him to his cross.
We imitate the faithful women who were the first to go to the tomb of the Risen One.
We join the apostles in announcing the death of the Lord and professing his resurrection.
We join the apostles to hear the Lord say,
This is … that sins may be forgiven.
Do this in memory of me.

Through the liturgy, in the Gospel, the sacraments and the Eucharist, Christ still comes to men and women, still bringing the kingdom of God.
With his blood he still washes away the guilt of our sins.
With his body he makes us whole, he receives us as children of God, and he offers the guarantee that our own bodies and spirits shall rise sharing forever in his glory.
The faithful women know it.
The holy apostles know it.
With the faithful women and the holy apostles, let us take joy in the saving charity that Christ offers to all.
With all the saints, let us live the saving charity that Christ offers to all.

That God Be Glorified in All


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