ST AMBROSE B.D. (Memorial) White
After the death of the bishop of Milan, Ambrose still an unbaptized catechumen was chosen to fill the office. On 7 December 374, he was baptized, ordained a priest, and consecrated as bishop. He immediately gave away his wealth to the Church to help the poor as an example to his flock. Ambrose was a preacher, teacher, bible student of renown, and writer of liturgical hymns. His preaching helped convert Saint Augustine of Hippo. Ambrose’s preaching also convinced Emperor Theodosius to do public penance for his sins. He was proclaimed a great Doctor of the Latin Church by Pope Boniface VIII in 1298. The title “Honey Tongued Doctor” was bestowed on him because of his speaking and preaching ability.
First Reading: Is 40:25-31; Psalm: 103. R. v. 1a; Gospel: Mt 11:28-30
WHEN OUR BURDEN MEETS JESUS
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
“Come to me, all you who labour and are burdened and I will give you rest. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Mt 11:28, 30).
The experiences of life have taught us that things will not always go our way. People have gone through some challenges in life and never recovered from them. Some people became sick and sought several medical help and also prayed to God but never got better and died consequently. Some encountered setbacks in their businesses and professions and were unable to bounce back as they wished. Not all problems have been solved in life. Even Jesus did not cure all the sick in days even though he has the power to do so. He did not even stop his own death. This is the reality of life.
Although we may not find a perfect answer as to why we experience setbacks that defy all solutions; but there is surely a way to persevere in these experiences. Jesus offered this solution when he said, “Come to me, all you who labour and are burdened and I will give you rest. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Mt 11:28, 30). No one perfectly understands human suffering like Jesus. He went through it at his passion and death and persevered to the end. So he knows how we can pass through difficult experiences that we cannot change. If we therefore cling to Jesus in faith and trust, he will see us through.
Some people may see this as an escapist way of handling situations that we should fight till the end. But what then happens when all possible solutions have been tried and nothing changes? Where do we go from there? What Jesus offers us is the grace to carry our burdens without that feeling of complete abandonment. Knowing that Jesus is with us in our troubles and pains gives us that supernatural comfort and joy. But when we choose not to invite Jesus into our situations, our burdens could be depressing and suicidal. Life without Jesus is empty and meaningless. Imagine then suffering without him.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Lord Jesus, give us the grace to bear our burdens with you. Amen.