The Wisest Gift of All … Thursday, June 13

English: Adoration of the Wise Men by Murillo

Adoration of the Wise Men by Murillo.

A Rosary Meditation … The Third Joyful Mystery, the Nativity. “And falling down they worshiped Him. And they offered Him gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.” Matthew 2:11. Here are three wise men, magi, some call them kings, from the east, kneeling down and worshiping a Baby. Sadly, now our “wise men” and “kings” (aka misguided politicians) tell us that babies are just lumps of tissue that can be discarded without guilt or second thought. But these wise men? They were truly wise. They looked beyond things that seemed to be obvious, like poverty and lack of social status, and perceived the real. This was no ordinary baby and they knew it. It was proper to kneel down to Him. He outranked them and they knew it. Do we really understand that Jesus outranks us? When we genuflect before Him do we realize that this isn’t just some nice guy with kind words and loving advice but God Almighty, the One Who created us, the One we belong to? And when we bow the knee what sort of gifts do we bring? Because He has no needs. We can offer Him things like gold, and that’s fine so long as our heart is in the right place, but do we honestly realize that our heart being in the right place is actually the only gift He truly wants? Or do we fool ourselves into believing that outward show is enough? Remember that Judas, when he said “Is it me, Lord?” to the statement made by Jesus that one of the Twelve would betray Him, was making a very fine show of it. We need to do some soul-searching when we approach this Child. We need to remember that the only gold He really wants from us is the love of our hearts with the heart-felt proofs that go with it.

Today …

St. Anthony of Padua
Doctor of the Church

St. Anthony of Padua<br>Doctor of the Church

St. Anthony of Padua, Doctor of the Church. Saint Anthony was canonized (declared a saint) less than one year after his death. Who doesn’t love St. Anthony? It’s fairly often that I wander around my cabin muttering “St. Anthony, please help me find fill-in-the-blank” because he’s good at helping locate lost objects and I’m really good at misplacing fill-in-the-blank. There is perhaps no more loved and admired saint in the Catholic Church than Saint Anthony of Padua, a Doctor of the Church. Though his work was in Italy, he was born in Portugal, where our Lady would appear centuries later at Fatima. He first joined the Augustinian Order and then left it and joined the Franciscan Order in 1221, when he was 26 years old. The reason he became a Franciscan was because of the death of the five Franciscan protomartyrs — St. Bernard, St. Peter, St. Otho, St. Accursius, and St. Adjutus — who shed their blood for the Catholic Faith in the year 1220, in Morocco, in North Africa, and whose headless and mutilated bodies had been brought to St. Anthony’s monastery on their way back for burial. St. Anthony became a Franciscan in the hope of shedding his own blood and becoming a martyr. He lived only ten years after joining the Franciscan Order. He is generally depicted holding the Child Jesus. St. Anthony brought real gold to Jesus. He gave God the gift of his heart fully. And if your gift to God of your heart seems somehow misplaced in the rush of the world ask Anthony to help. He’s good at finding things that are lost.

Quote … “Attribute to God every good that you have received. If you take credit for something that does not belong to you, you will be guilty of theft.” ~ St Anthony ~