Reflections and Perspectives

Welcome! Reflections, Testimonials, and Perspectives for St. Mary Magdalen are offered by our priests, deacons, parishioners, and others as guest writers. We will offer a Sunday Reflection as well as other topics. 

  • Deacon Anthony Cincotta

Wednesday of the First Week of Advent

Isaiah 25:6-10a, Psalm 23:1-6, & Matthew 15:29-37

Today's Gospel narrative provides a powerful lesson on Jesus' mission in our world and a glimpse of our mission. As Matthew notes so movingly, Jesus sat on the mountainside near the Sea of Galilee, and crowds of people brought their loved ones to Him. From all over the surrounding area, families and friends carried the people they cared most about to the place where they could be healed, at the feet of Jesus.

Our Lord spent several days touching, blessing, and loving, as He made the mute speak, the deformed were made sound, the disabled could walk, and the blind given sight. It was an incredible time, and the astonished crowd gave thanks and glory to God. They gave glory to Jesus, the Divine Physician.

Jesus knew that His message depended on more than His ability to touch weakened bodies with His own hands. It was important for people to be cured and healed in their bodies, but the call to His followers went much deeper. He wanted the disciples to accept His mission and begin to care for others as He was doing. He looked around with a loving gaze at the crowds that gathered, rejoicing in the newfound health of their loved ones, and he saw that they were hungry. Jesus said to his disciples, "I do not want to send them away hungry, for fear they may collapse on the way."

The disciples shrugged and had no idea what they could do for the people. The crowd was too large to deal with, and they could not fix it by themselves. However, in their blindness and weakness, they could not see that they needed Jesus to care for others. Our Lord has them gather food from the crowd and then blesses it and asks them to distribute it. There was plenty, and the disciples were able to care for the entire masses, but only with the help of Jesus.

I begin to think of all those who are ill, blind, discouraged, and in need of healing, and I would love to carry them lovingly to Jesus and ask for healing. The real work Jesus is asking us is to rely on Him for help in caring for others. Feeding a crowd is an impossible task, one that we might tend to dismiss as impossible for us to do. Yet Jesus invites us to lean on Him, rely on Him, and realize that although we can not get everything done as individuals, we can accomplish the impossible with the help of our sisters and brothers in Christ.

Question of the day: How will you come together with others in your parish community to become the hands of Jesus to aid those in need?

Prayer: "Behold, our Lord will come with power and will enlighten the eyes of His servants." (Isaiah 40:10, 35:5)


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