THURSDAY OF THE TWENTY-SECOND WEEK OF ORDINARY TIME SEPTEMBER 5, 2019
A reading of the holy Gospel according to Luke 5:1-11
While the crowd was pressing in on Jesus and listening to the word of God, he was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret. He saw two boats there alongside the lake; the fishermen had disembarked and were washing their nets. Getting into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, he asked him to put out a short distance from the shore. Then he sat down and taught the crowds from the boat. After he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, "Put out into deep water and lower your nets for a catch." Simon said in reply, "Master, we have worked hard all night and have caught nothing, but at your command I will lower the nets." When they had done this, they caught a great number of fish and their nets were tearing. They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come to help them. They came and filled both boats so that the boats were in danger of sinking. When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at the knees of Jesus and said, "Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man." For astonishment at the catch of fish they had made seized him and all those with him, and likewise James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners of Simon. Jesus said to Simon, "Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men." When they brought their boats to the shore, they left everything and followed him. REFLECTION: When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at the knees of Jesus and said,"Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man."
...at your command I will lower the nets."
St Matthew was an extortionist, hated by all. His life changed dramatically after meeting Jesus.
St Disma was a criminal thief sentenced to death. He met Jesus and converted before dying.
St Augustine was a pleasure seeker, had a mistress and an out of wedlock child, found Jesus and became a great Doctor of the Church.
St Pelagia was a loose woman. She converted.
St. Mary of Egypt was a seductress and converted.
St. Peter was a sinful man but became the first Pope of the Catholic Church.
St Mary Magdalene was a prostitute but after meeting Jesus converted.
In every case mentioned and many more examples found, Jesus approached man, the sinner, and in His great mercy drew them closer to Him for their salvation. It was the free will of the sinner to accept Jesus.
Never give up praying for someone for many a convert eventually found the peace they were seeking, without knowing why or when. Most likely someone was praying for them. God has asked us to participate in our own salvation and the salvation of others. As PAPA Family let us embrace prayer for all priests as that is what we promised and consecrated ourselves to do.
As Peter said, "At your word I will let down the nets."
God works in and through us for His glory. He expects greater things than we can do ourselves. Just let down your nets when God commands you. You will be surprised to see what you can accomplish with God. With obedience and faith, and trust in God, nothing is impossible.