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Association of the Miraculous Medal
Weekly Gospel Reflection

Besides her great privilege of being the Mother of God, Mary was also her Son’s first disciple. She is often called the Model, or Exemplar of the Church. Following her example, we walk with her through the Gospels as we reflect on her response to God in her life.

June 24, 2018 — Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Mark 4:35-41
 Father Oscar Lukefahr, C.M.

In 1997, friends Hank and Jeanne Moreno took me to a twelve-day pilgrimage in Israel. It was a real blessing to be where Jesus lived, and the pilgrimage added depth and meaning to the reading of Bible passages like today’s Gospel. When we were at the Sea of Galilee, we walked to a kosher Chinese restaurant, where we had dinner (including some deliciously prepared St. Peter’s fish) on an outdoor deck overlooking the Sea of Galilee. During the meal, some strong gusts of wind swept down from the mountains, reminding us of how sudden storms can make the Sea of Galilee a very dangerous place.

That’s why the apostles were so frightened when a “violent squall came up,” with waves breaking over their boat, threatening to sink it. They awoke the sleeping Jesus and begged him to save them. He quieted the sea with a command, showing his power to calm every kind of storm.

There are many storms in life. There are tornadoes, hurricanes, and incessant rains that flood entire states. There is the turmoil caused by family problems, the loss of a job, or unreasonable neighbors. There is the upheaval that comes from serious illness, our own or that of family and friends. Such events threaten to drown us with fear, especially when it seems that Jesus is “asleep.”

In all such storms, we must imitate the apostles and turn to Jesus with the words quoted by Saint Matthew in his description of this incident: “Lord, save us! We are perishing!” Jesus will say to those storms, “Quiet! Be still!”

At times it might seem that Jesus is asleep and that we call to him in vain. Mary assures us that Jesus is with us no matter what. She gave birth to Jesus in a stable. She fled into exile in Egypt with Jesus and Joseph. She spent three days searching for Jesus before finding him in the Temple. She watched as Jesus was rejected by his own people, and then stood at the foot of his cross. Through it all, Mary trusted in Jesus until he brought her to heaven to reign as his Queen Mother, Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal.

So we have recourse to Mary, and she helps us trust Jesus through all the storms of life, until finally we cross the waters of death to our eternal home. We pray, “Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death.”

Read last week's reflection.