Dear Friends of St. Joseph Retreat Center,
Welcome to our first email in the Lenten Series. Please join us on this prayer filled journey. May we all take a few moments each week to contemplate the words shared by Anne-Louise DePalo.
Thank you for your continues support and dedication. With the new changes in mandates and requirements that we can welcome you into the Retreat Center in the coming months!
Lovingly yours in Christ,
Sister Josita DiVita, FDC
Join us on a Lenten Journey lead by to Anne-Louise DePalo.
++ FIFTH SUNDAY ++
REFLECTION FOR MARCH 26, 2023
THE FIFTH SUNDAY OF LENT
Do You Believe?
“I know that whatever you ask of God, God will give you.” John 11:22
Martha is one of the most memorable women of the New Testament. Her name is derived from the Hebrew word meaning “strong” and is translated to mean “Lady Boss.” I identify with her and admire her strength and ability to manage the household that she shares with Lazarus and Mary. What struck me as I read the familiar story of Lazarus being raised from the dead was Martha’s faith. She knew Jesus was the Christ, and whatever He asked of the Father He would do.
Martha had come a long way. If you recall in Luke’s gospel account of Martha and Mary, Luke 11:38-41, Jesus reminded Martha that she was too troubled about many things that were not as important as being with Him. Martha was very concerned about hosting Jesus and having everything done perfectly. She was upset with her sister Mary because she was sitting at the feet of Jesus rather than helping her. Martha had come to learn that Jesus is what matters. Martha finally “got it.” She declared Jesus’ true identity as the Christ, and that He could perform any miracle, as well as her belief in the resurrection. Her faith had grown. This is because of her relationship with Christ. A relationship that was developed one on one over time. This close relationship is what leads her to proclaim, “I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God.”
I ask myself, do I have such faith? Do I believe in miracles, and that Jesus answers my prayers even if they are not the answers I expect. Are my spiritual disciplines and practices during Lent helping me grow in faith?
“The more we understand what we believe, the more our faith will be light and strength for us,” Father Jacques Phillipp. Such faith can move mountains, give us direction and enlightenment, and help us in our daily lives. Knowledge of Christ comes through prayer, study, and being in a relationship with Him. Jesus asked Martha, “Whoever believes in me shall never die; do you believe this? Martha answered with an emphatic, “Yes! This was said even in the face of her brother’s death. What would your answer be?
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