Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Sept. 28, 2011 Wednesday: 26th Week in Ordinary Time

"The Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head"

O Lady Poverty, the Son of the Most High, having become a lover of your beauty» (Wsd 8,2)... found you most faithful in all things. Even before he left his bright realms for the earth, you prepared him a fitting place, a throne on which to sit, a couch in which to rest: a most poor Virgin from whom he sprung and shone upon the world. At his Nativity you ran to meet him so that he might find comfort in you. You «laid him in a manger because there was no room in the inn» (Lk 2,7) and always, inseparably, accompanied him so that, during his whole life, while he dwelt amongst us: «Though the foxes had dens and the birds of the air had nests, he had no place to lay his head». And when he who in the past had opened the lips of the prophets opened his own lips to preach, he first praised you, saying: «Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven» (Mt 5,3). And when he chose friends as witnesses to his holy preaching and glorious work for the salvation of humankind, he did not take rich merchants but poor fishermen, that by this choice he might show how the value he placed on you, Lady Poverty, was to create love for you in all. And finally, in order that your goodness, greatness and power might be made manifest to everyone and show how you are above all the virtues and how your kingdom is not of this world but from heaven: you alone remained with the King of Glory when all his chosen friends had fled from him in fear. Like a most dear companion and faithful spouse, you did not leave him for an instant. The more he was despised by all, the more you cleaved to him... You alone consoled him. You were with him «unto death, even death on a cross» (Phil 2,8). And on the cross itself, his body stripped, his arms extended, his hands and feet pierced... nothing seemed more glorious in him than you.
-Account of a companion of Saint Francis of Assisi

Sacrum commercium, 6 (trans. Fr Cuthbert OFM; adapted)