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Monday, September 17, 2007

Feast of St. Robert Bellarmine

Robert was born in Tuscany, Italy in 1542. He became a Jesuit priest known for his theological teaching and writings at the Roman College which he directed. He acted as the Pope's theologian, prepared two catechisms, supervised the Vatican library and helped revise the Latin Bible. He was appointed Cardinal at the age of fifty-seven and then was also Archbishop of Capua in 1602. He is a doctor of the Church and was known for his holiness and much loved as a pastor to his flock.

Today's Gospel (Luke 7:1-10) has the centurion concerned about his slave who is dying. Having heard about Jesus, he sent elders of the Jews to ask him to come and save the life of his slave. Jesus went with them. At this point, the centurion sent friends to say, "Lord, do not trouble yourself, for I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof. Therefore, I did not consider myself worthy to come to you; but say the word and let my servant be healed.: Jesus praises the faith of the centurion and the slave was in good health by the time the messengers returned.

We remember the faith and the humility of the centurion before Communion when we say, Lord, I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word and I shall be healed.
At my parish, the words are sung so we really have time to think about the act of faith we are making.

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