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A reading from the holy Gospel according to Mark 9:14-29

As Jesus came down from the mountain with Peter, James, John

and approached the other disciples,

they saw a large crowd around them and scribes arguing with them.

Immediately on seeing him,

the whole crowd was utterly amazed.

They ran up to him and greeted him.

He asked them, “What are you arguing about with them?”

Someone from the crowd answered him,

“Teacher, I have brought to you my son possessed by a mute spirit.

Wherever it seizes him, it throws him down;

he foams at the mouth, grinds his teeth, and becomes rigid.

I asked your disciples to drive it out, but they were unable to do so.”

He said to them in reply,

“O faithless generation, how long will I be with you?

How long will I endure you? Bring him to me.”

They brought the boy to him.

And when he saw him,

the spirit immediately threw the boy into convulsions.

As he fell to the ground, he began to roll around

and foam at the mouth.

Then he questioned his father,

“How long has this been happening to him?”

He replied, “Since childhood.

It has often thrown him into fire and into water to kill him.

But if you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.”

Jesus said to him,

“‘If you can!’ Everything is possible to one who has faith.”

Then the boy’s father cried out, “I do believe, help my unbelief!”

Jesus, on seeing a crowd rapidly gathering,

rebuked the unclean spirit and said to it,

“Mute and deaf spirit, I command you:

come out of him and never enter him again!”

Shouting and throwing the boy into convulsions, it came out.

He became like a corpse, which caused many to say, “He is dead!”

But Jesus took him by the hand, raised him, and he stood up.

When he entered the house, his disciples asked him in private,

“Why could we not drive the spirit out?”

He said to them, “This kind can only come out through prayer.”

REFLECTION: “Why could we not drive the spirit out?”

He said to them, “This kind can only come out through prayer.”

There was a certain miracle performed through my beloved Padre Pio (while alive) that deeply touched me. It was regarding a girl named Gemma, who was born without pupils in her eyes, a condition impossible to solve. Her parents prayed fervently to Our Lady for a miracle to happen and their prayers were eventually answered. A relative of the girl saw Padre Pio in a dream, asking her “Where is this Gemma for whom so many prayers are being offered that they are almost deafening”. Long story short, at the age of 7, little Gemma was taken by her grandmother to see Padre Pio; and without pupils and any medical explanation, she got the ability to see. I can only imagine the number and intensity of the prayers being offered by Gemma’s parents to become “almost deafening” in heaven.

I heard a priest saying that God has prescribed a certain amount of prayers for each petition to be granted; that does make sense to me. I have received certain “favors” or “miracles” in my life through the intercession of our loving Lady, and even though I prefer not to share the details, I must state that huge amounts of prayers were said and many tears shed when begging for them.

I feel that prayers have a potential double effect: first the favor that we are specifically asking for, and second an imperceptible change in our soul, a refinement, a sanctification that comes from the company of our Lord when we seek him directly in prayer or through the intercession of Our Lady or a Saint.

Oh Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee!

Padre Pio, pray for us!

PAPA Foundation
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