Friday Week 3 Ordinary Time

Hebrews 10, 32-39
Mark 4,26-34

From The WORDS in other words (2018) by Fr Flavie Villanueva SVD (Manila, Philippines)

During my recent visit to the Holy Land, one of the 3 local guides, Ezzat, made my stay special. At one point, he brought me 3 silver cross necklaces! He had been chatting with an old friend selling necklaces, who, upon learning he was with a priest, immediately took these 3 necklaces and instructed him: “Please give these to the priest.” Dumb founded, I immediately requested Ezzat to take me to her that I may thank her personally. Amira had wrinkled hands and a slightly bent body but her black round eyes sparkled much joy.

After thanking her for the beautiful surprise gift we gave each other a hug. Photo souvenir done, we said goodbye. I thanked Ezzat likewise for the wonderful experience. Smiling, he remarked, “She loves priests.” “But know that you were an instrument in bridging that love,” I replied.

Ezzat’s and Amira’s kind gestures seemed normal for them. But since these came with sincerity and love, such actions brought much joy, peace and that special feeling of being loved. As a seminarian, I coined a simple mission statement, “Do one surprising and beautiful act each day.” And at the busy alley in the Church of St. Sergius (a holy place where the Holy Family found an abode during their sojourn to Egypt), I did receive that “one surprising and beautiful act” that day!

The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few, so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest. Thank you my dear Ezzat and Amira for giving me a doze of my own medicine – do one surprisingly beautiful act each day. Try it. Hope it also becomes your habit!

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