Memorial of Saint Monica

Jesus said to his disciples:

Stay awake!
For you do not know on which day your Lord will come.
Be sure of this: 
if the master of the house
had known the hour of night when the thief was coming,
he would have stayed awake
and not let his house be broken into.
So too, you also must be prepared,
for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.

“Who, then, is the faithful and prudent servant,
whom the master has put in charge of his household
to distribute to them their food at the proper time?
Blessed is that servant whom his master on his arrival finds doing so.
Amen, I say to you, he will put him in charge of all his property.
But if that wicked servant says to himself, ‘My master is long delayed,’
and begins to beat his fellow servants,
and eat and drink with drunkards,
the servant’s master will come on an unexpected day
and at an unknown hour and will punish him severely
and assign him a place with the hypocrites,
where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth. 

— Matthew 24:42-51

The peace of the Lord be with you. Such an appropriate Gospel passage on the Feast of Saint Monica. Saint Monica, as many of you may know, was the mother of Saint Augustine. Earlier in his life Saint Augustine was very caught up in the pleasures of the world. Monica prayed for his conversion, which ultimately, God brought to fruition.

Saint Monica, like today’s Gospel, reminds us to remain steadfast and true to our vocation — whatever that may be. This can be difficult at times because the fruit of our labor is not always easy to see. At those times discouragement can often prompt us to loose our enthusiasm, seek destructive pleasures, and become frustrated. So much of our work is nurturing the soil and sowing seed which may that take considerable time to germinate. If we remain faithful like Saint Monica, the fruits of the harvest can be great — just look at the life of Saint Augustine, whose feast day we celebrate tomorrow. Like the old spiritual says:

keep your eyes on the prize all day long, keep your eyes on the prize all day long

In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Readings for Thursday, August 27, 2020