Homily for the Memorial of St. Padre Pio (Pius) of Pietrelcina
Theme: The life of a true disciple
By: Fr. Francis Onwunali
Homily for Thursday September 23 2021
MEMORIAL OF ST. PADRE PIO (PIUS) OF PIETRELCINA/ THURSDAY OF THE 25TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
In our liturgy today, we celebrate the Memorial of St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina. Pius was born in 1887 in the small Italian village of Pietrelcina. He joined the Capuchin Frairs at the age of sixteen and was ordained a priest seven years later. For fifty years at the monastery of San Giovanni Rotundo he was a much sought after spiritual advisor, confessor, and intercessor whose life was devoted to the Eucharist and prayer. Yet despite such notoriety, he would often say, “I only want to be a poor frair who prays”. St. Pius received the stigmata on September 20, 1918 while praying before a cross. He was reportedly able to bi-locate, levitate, and heal by touch. He died on September 23, 1968 at age 81.
Frustration and confusion in our life journey can be overcome when we make, seeking, understanding and committing to the will of God priority in our life.
In the first reading (Haggai 1: 1-8), the Prophet Haggai challenges the returnees from exile especially the wealthy who devout their time in rebuilding their own houses instead of the house of God as directed by God. He points out that their own labours and efforts are not yielding desired results because they have not given their attention first to God and the Temple. “They have sown much, but have brought in little, have eaten, but have not been satisfied. He who earned wages earned them for a bag with holes in it” (Hg. 1: 6). Could it be that your life challenges at the moment are as a result of your neglecting God’s will and directives?
In the gospel (Luke 9: 7’9), the passage presents both Herod’s interest in Jesus and his confusion about who Jesus truly is.
Dear friends, the life of a true disciple is not one bereft of challenges and storms of life. However, such life situations can be overcome by reclining on the will of God.
I pray as we journey in life today, let us not be like the immediate returnees from exile, putting our selfish desires before God’s directives. Unlike Herod, may our curiosity about who Jesus is in our life, lead us to encounter Jesus, be convinced of our mission in life and be committed to following Jesus unto victory. May we rejoice in the Lord always (Phil. 4: 4), for we can do all things in Him that strenghtens us (Phil. 4: 13). Have a grace-full day!
Fr. Francis Onwunali