Saturday, February 20, 2016

Fr. Jacques Philippe - When I am Weak, I am Strong

One week ago yesterday, I attended a talk by Fr. Jacques Philippe offered at the St. Thomas Aquinas Forum through the Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia. The topic Father worked with was the paradox "When I am Weak, I am Strong" and he used several examples from Scripture along with examples from the lives of St. Therese of Lisieux and Mother Teresa of Calcutta. He spoke in French as his interpreter beautifully relayed his message in English.

I found it no consequence that on the following Sunday, the meditation in the Magnificat reinforced Fr. Philippe's message. The Scripture reading Sunday centered around temptation and the meditation by Fr. Peter Semenenko read:

"In our present condition, virtue cannot take root without the help of temptation...

Faith, hope, charity, chastity, patience, and every virtue must be tried. Otherwise there would be no virtue, a reasonable, considered act, freely willed and directed toward good. Growth in virtue is conditioned by temptation...

Therefore we can distinguish...two reasons or purposes for temptation: [one is] to become more perfect, for strength is made perfect in weakness, so that virtue becomes something that is definitely ours... "

This French priest from 2016 and this Polish priest from 1886...together in thought, pertinent for today, all about virtue, gift of the Holy Spirit.

Think of how often this happens in our lives! Godincidence. What's yours?

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