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Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time – Cycle C

15 October 2016

Reflecting on Lk. 18: 1-8

My husband Ben and I are leading a pilgrimage to Lourdes and Fatima this week. I’ve asked everyone I’ve talked to recently how we can pray for them while we are there. It’s so touching to me how people never even think to pray for themselves. Always, it’s their kids, and it’s sad how similar the prayers are. Please pray that my kids go back to church.  Please pray that my grandchildren get baptized. Please pray that my son gets a good job. Please pray that my daughter’s depression gets better. Please pray for healing of my grandchild’s drug addiction.

My oncologist, a smart, warm, funny doctor who wears charming ties and never appears to be the least bit hurried, has a stunning poster in his office at the Rocky Mountain Cancer Center. Against a dark blue background, a battered but sturdy oak tree holds its own against the wind and the cold. The text says: Do not pray to have an easy life. Pray to be a strong person.

What does it mean to be a strong person? That widow who goes it alone at the city gates, never offering a bribe, never losing hope that she will be heard and given justice, now she’s a strong person.  Imagine what that takes, to have no influence, no special interest groups lobbying for you, just your faith that the judge will hear your case and find in your favor.

Jesus must have seen the blind, the starving, the dying every day. And yet, he told us to never stop begging God to give us what we need. Be a strong person, he seems to say. And never stop believing.

Help us pray for you while we on our pilgrimage. Take a moment to ask God for the healing you need.

Kathy McGovern ©2016

Ordinary Time - Cycle C

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