Have your prayer intentions remembered in our daily masses and communal prayers.

“Your ways, O Lord, make known to me; teach me your paths, guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my savior.”  Psalm 25:4-5

Last week we talked about the first intuition we had of God’s presence in our lives—and how that insight matches perfectly with our own very human desire for fulfillment.  Today, I’d like to dwell on the scripture from the Book of Psalms that gives us a path forward.

“Teach me your ways…”   We say this in prayer all the time.  We ask the Lord to show us how to better reflect his love and compassion.  And we pray for the strength to witness that love even when it’s hard.

This is what we pray for—an understanding of what God is calling us to be, and the courage to accept the invitation.  We pray about it because witnessing God’s love isn’t always easy, right?  Jonah is a good example of how our lives can go off track.  Today’s reading needs a little context but it’s still a teaching moment.  Jonah had disobeyed God and found himself in a tight spot.  But God being God, Jonah got a second chance.  When he obeyed God’s will by going to Nineveh to preach repentance, two things happened:  that act not only saved the lives of the Ninevites, it was going to save Jonah’s life, too.  But Jonah had trouble being magnanimous.  He was mad because God spared the Ninevites, too.

What does this story say about forgiveness—one of the central practices of our faith?  Is it only good “for me” but “not for you”?  The lesson is that God cares for all of us, even the sinner, and maybe especially the sinner.  God’s grace and offer of salvation are infinite.  Our calling is nothing more than to receive these gifts with gratitude and then pass them on.

Any of us, including Jonah and the Ninevites, can enter the Kingdom of God.  That’s because God practices mercy.  And that’s why we should, too

Friend, when you pray, asking God to show you the way toward salvation, accept that finding your unique path is linked to three healing graces:  mercy, forgiveness, and kindness.  Embrace all three.  Then yes, pass them on.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Father Raymond J. Finch, M.M.

Prayer for 4th Sunday

Lord Jesus, your daughter Dorothy Day,

Servant of God, admonished us

saying, “We only love God as much

as the person we love the least.”

Help us, like her, to see you

even in the least likable people

for whom, like us, you also came

to live and die and rise again.

You gave us the sign of Jonah

not just by lying in the tomb

for three days but also in having

the Gentiles, the Ninevites,

respond to Your powerful

words of prophecy calling all to repentance.

May we never withhold Your mercy

from others especially those who seem to us most lost.

Help us to break down the barriers

that divide Your children between “us” and “them”

and to cross borders of race, religion, and politics

that from the diversity of cultures and peoples

we might help You establish Your kingdom

where all are welcome and equal In Your sight.

Amen

Prayer by Maryknoll Missioner, Father Joseph Veneroso

ABOUT MARYKNOLL

We are a Catholic Society of priests and brothers based in the United States. We are dedicated to missionary work overseas in over 20 countries. Additionally, we animate Catholics in the United States to follow their own baptismal call to share God’s compassion and love with the poor, the sick, and all those in need.

OUR GENERAL COUNCIL

L-R Tom O'Brien, Ray Finch, Joe Everson, Russ Feldmeier

(Fr. Tom O’Brien, Fr. Ray Finch, Fr. Joe Everson, Fr. Russ Feldmeier)

The Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers is overseen by our General Council, led by Superior General Fr. Ray Finch.

OUR FOUNDERS

L-R Tom O'Brien, Ray Finch, Joe Everson, Russ Feldmeier

(Our Co-Founders Father Price and Father Walsh)

PLACES WE SERVE

EVANGELIZATION, PARISHES, AND PROJECTS

USA

STORIES OF MISSION

(Africa) Education and Formation of African Clergy

The Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers Africa Region will provide tuition assistance to African clergy, male and female religious at institutes of higher education or specialized training. Read More

Stories of Our Global Mission

The calling of a lifetime

The life of a Maryknoll missioner is challenging, fulfilling, and deeply rewarding. Follow your baptismal call to mission by sharing God’s compassion with the poor, the sick, and people most in need.

ASSOCIATE PROGRAM

Enrich your own vocation, walk-in solidarity with people overseas, and work together with Maryknoll Missioners. We offer US priests and Brothers ordained elsewhere the opportunity to work in overseas missions.

L-R Tom O'Brien, Ray Finch, Joe Everson, Russ Feldmeier
“Go where you are needed but not wanted, and stay until you are wanted but not needed.”
– Bishop James E. Walsh, M.M.
First Maryknoll Bishop
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