Memorial of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini, Virgin
Today wraps up having seminarians of Conception Seminary College as our daily reflection writers for the first half of November. Every day featured a reflection from a different seminarian, mixed in with reflections from Fr. Pachomius, Conception’s Dean of Students. This has been an opportunity for our seminarians to put their education to practice and connect with the people of God in a pastoral way.
“Are we there yet?” Is there a more irritating statement from children said to adults than this? When I look at our seminarians trying to be a finished product and feeling they are not moving fast enough, I am glad that I am not at that stage myself. (To be fair, my senior brother-monks roll their eyes at my calls for urgency in this or that issue that faces the monastery.) When we consider the impatience of youth as grown adults, we can only imagine what it is like for God relating to our nervy prayers.
The reading from the book of Wisdom appears also in our liturgy leading up to Christmas, and the celebration of God becoming flesh to save us as one of us. The all-powerful Word leaped from heaven’s throne to earth when? “When peaceful stillness compassed everything.” And in our gospel Jesus asks the rhetorical question: If a wicked man will grant the persistent requests, will the good Lord be slow to provide help? God acts decisively but we must be patient, persistent in faith, and at peace in what to us might seem like delay. In fact, He is working without us noticing.
Often, we cannot see grace at work in the present. We see it most when we look back in reflection. In making sense of where we came from and where we are now we gain perspective. Little kids live without much perspective on the past, and thankfully, they are easily redirected – the tears of a skinned knee are dried at the joy of a popsicle. Age grants us perspective and hopefully the grace to learn how to trust Providence even when we do not see the fruits in the present.
Are you patient and persistent? Will the Son of Man find you faithful when He comes?
Reflection by Fr. Pachomius Meade, OSB