Martha Martha Father Stefan working on Homily for Sunday July 17 ‘Soul Institute’

Martha and Mary
But Martha was distracted by all the preparations to be made. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her to help me!” “Martha, Martha, the Lord replied, “you are worried and upset about many things. But only one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, and it will not be taken away from her.”

St Teresa tells us in her book ‘Interior Castle’ that in the 7th mansion Martha and Mary work together. There is no longer a tension between the active and the contemplative life. In the 7th mansion the person is always in a state of contemplation even when busy with work.

St Theresa writes “Martha and Mary must work together when they offer the Lord Lodging, and must have Him ever with them, and they must not entertain Him badly and give him nothing to eat. And how can Mary give Him anything, seated as she is at His feet, unless her sister helps her? His food consists in our bringing him souls, in every possible way, so that they may be saved and may praise Him for ever.”

Jacques Philippe in his book ‘Thirsting for Prayer’ writes “God Comes first in our lives. Human life only find its full balance and beauty when God is at its center. “Serve God first! says St. Joan of Arc. Faithfulness to prayer is what effectively ensures that we can give this central place to God is specific ways. Without faithfulness to payer, giving priority to God risks being nothing more than a good intention, or even an illusion. If we do not pray, we sill subtly but surely put our own egos at the center of our lives, instead of the living God. We will be distracted by a huge number of different desires, demands and fears. By contrast, if we do pray, even though we have to fight against the weight of our own egos and our habits of self-centeredness and selfishness, we will find that we are working in the direction of detachment from ourselves and re-centering on God that little by little gives him (or restores him to) the right place in our life.”

Mother Theresa said “My secret is simple I pray.”

Saint John Paul II said “This training in holiness calls for a Christian life distinguish above all in the art of prayer. The Jubilee Year has been a year of more intense prayer, both personal and communal. But we will know that prayer cannot be taken for granted. We have to learn to pray: as it were learning this art ever from the lips of the Divine Master himself, like the first disciples: ‘Lord, teach us to pray!’ (Lk 11:1) Prayer develops that conversation with Christ which makes us his intimate friends: ‘Abide in me and I in you’ (Jn 15:4) This reciprocity is the very substance and soul of the Christian life, and the condition of all true pastoral life. Wrought in us by the Holy Spirit, this reciprocity opens us, through Christ and in Christ, to contemplation of the Father’s face. Learning this Trinitarian shape of Christian prayer and living it fully, above all in the liturgy, the summit and source of the Church’s life, but also in personal experience, is the secret of a truly vital Christianity, which has no reason to fear the future, because it returns continually to the source and find in them new life.”

John Paul II says “The new evangelization does not consist in a ‘new Gospel’ which would always derive from ourselves, our culture, our analysis of the needs of men, Hence, it would not be ‘Gospel’ but mere human invention, and there would be no salvation in it. Nor does it consist of trimming away the Gospel everything that seems difficult for the contemporary mind-set to accept….The starting point for the new evengelization is the certainty that in Christ are ‘inscrutable riches’ (Eph 3:8)

Pope Francis stating that “we ourselves, when we don’t pray, what we’re doing is closing the door to the Lord. And not praying is this: closing the door to the Lord, so that He can do nothing.”

“On the other hand, prayer, in the face of a problem, a difficult situation, a calamity, is opening the door to the Lord so that He will come.”

This is what praying is,” he stressed, “opening the door to the Lord, so that he can do something. If we close the door, God can do nothing! Let us think on this Mary who has chosen the better part, and makes us see the way, as the door is opened to the Lord.”

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