He Wept for Souls

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Thursday of the Thirty-Third Week of Ordinary Time


Luke 19:41-44

As Jesus drew near Jerusalem, he saw the city and wept over it, saying, “If this day you only knew what makes for peacebut now it is hidden from your eyes. For the days are coming upon you when your enemies will raise a palisade against you; they will encircle you and hem you in on all sides. They will smash you to the ground and your children within you, and they will not leave one stone upon another within you because you did not recognize the time of your visitation.”


Opening Prayer: Lord, help me to love the salvation of souls as much as you do and give me the grace to do all I can to make your face known!


Encountering Christ:


  1. “He Saw the City and Wept: In this Gospel, Jesus shows us a very intimate side of his human emotions and his divine heart. In one moment, we see him weep over the blindness of the people to his coming in the flesh. This has a visible effect on him in that he sheds tears for the people of God, but these are not tears of self-pity. His divine heart longs for the salvation of all men and women past, present, and future, and he is revealing through his tears his Father’s love for every one of his children. He longs for all to be saved and to come into his glory! What is my attitude toward the salvation of souls, especially my own?


  1. They Will Hem You In: Isn’t this exactly what sin does in our lives? It encircles us and hems us in on all sides. Evil is relentless and a respecter of no one. It is aggressive and sneaky. When we are blind to the presence of Our Lord even in a few small areas of our life, we weaken and sometimes become dependent on or enslaved to that vice, which can completely blind us. Jesus is straightforward in the Gospel. He says that if we don’t open our eyes to him and embrace him in our life, we will eventually get overwhelmed and encircled by sin. In what area of my life do I need to vanquish sin so as to better see Jesus’s deep love for me?


  1. The Time of My Visitation: Jesus came some 2,000 years ago and walked the roads of Galilee and Palestine. And Jesus continues to visit us in many ways today. Perhaps his favorite way to visit us is through a baptized son or daughter who reflects the face of God. He is also present to others through our eyes, our hands, our words, and our deeds. Our witness should never be underestimated, since this is how Jesus has chosen to spread Christianity throughout the world. Do I look for and see Christ in others? Do I seek to be Christ to others?


Conversing with Christ: Jesus, I believe that you dwell in me by virtue of my baptism and that you reach out to others through my person. Help me to be a faithful instrument of your love and to show your face in its fullness through my life of communion with you.


Resolution: Lord, today by your grace I will seek to intentionally be your hands, eyes, voice, and ambassador today to someone I meet.


Further Reflection: Pope Francis in the book The Name of God is Mercy offers excellent advice and guidance to being Christ in the world by living with the merciful heart of God himself.


Father Todd Arsenault, LC, was ordained in 2005 and served for fourteen years in Ontario, Canada, as a spiritual director and retreat master. He recently moved to Rome to begin a two-year licentiate in Spiritual Theology.

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