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St. Mary Magdalen's
Catholic Church
Willesden Green
London NW10
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Friday, July 06, 2012
Fourteenth Sunday of the Year 8th July 2012
The Apostleship of the Sea.

Have you ever thought about the sailors working on the many cargo ships which carry the goods we buy daily? Do you realise that without them we could not use many of the items that we consider essential. A large number of the seafarers come from Catholic countries. Did you know that a sailor can be away from his home and family for up to 12 months at a time. During much of this time they will be at sea with no access to Mass or the Sacraments and life can be very lonely; and even when in port there are the pressures to unload and load the next cargo because a ship in port is not earning money. As you would expect the Church does care for these people through the organisation ‘Apostleship of the Sea’, the official maritime welfare agency of the Catholic Church. This is a worldwide agency with branches in each maritime country. The Apostleship is run by chaplains and volunteers and in the UK last year they visited 9,457 ships in 56 different ports, and gave direct assistance to 190,940 seafarers. Let us remember them in our prayers, but if you can they will gratefully receive donations to help in their work.

Jesus is rejected

Last week in the Gospel we heard how Jesus ordered a little girl to arise from the dead. But this week He seems to meet His match in His hometown of Nazareth - “He was not able to perform any mighty deed there” because of the people’s lack of faith. They acknowledged His wisdom and the power of His works. But they refused to recognize Him as someone sent by God. All they could see was how much “this man” was like them and grew up with them. As His disciples, we too face the mockery and contempt we hear of in today’s Psalm. And isn’t it often hardest to live our faith among those in our own families, those who think they really know us, who define us by the people we used to be – especially if we have changed and now chose to walk with Jesus? As Paul confides in today’s Epistle, insults and hardships are God’s way of teaching us to rely solely on His grace. An important lesson that we need to learn is that Jesus will not be able to work mighty deeds in our lives unless we abandon ourselves to Him in faith. That can be tough as our fallen human nature (as a result of original sin) keeps insisting that we must be in control of our lives. The reality is that we should trust in God and let Him control our lives.

posted by Sinead Reekie at 12:05 pm