This is part 3 of the nine part series of meditations on the Word of God with reflections from the writings of Venerable Mother Thecla Merlo and Blessed James Alberione. It is a journey firmly founded on her great loves: Jesus Master in the Holy Eucharist, the Gospel, the Church and souls, sought through the apostolate of social communication.
Jesus was the sole way for Mother Thecla. In particular, she reaffirmed his invitation: "Learn from me, for I am gentle and humble of heart" (Mt. 11:29). She progressively conformed herself to the life of the Master, giving priority to the stages of his hidden life, his passion and his glorification.
The Gospel Message
At that time Jesus exclaimed, I bless you, Father, Lord of heaven and of earth, for hiding these things from the learned and the clever and revealing them to little children. Yes, Father, for that is what it pleased you to do. (...). No one knows the Son except the Father, just as no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.
"Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Shoulder my yoke and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls, Yes, my yoke is easy and my burden light.” (Mt. 11:25-30).
Jn.13:1-17; Heb,5:8; Phil. 2:1-18; Phil.3:7-15; Ga.5:22; 1Pt 2:21-25
Meditating the Word with Mother Thecla
Mother Thecla was a disciple of Christ the Master. She suggested that we imitate him in a concrete way by adopting his sentiments and attitudes.
Let us imitate Jesus, our Master par excellence, in his renunciations: when the people wanted to make him a king, he preferred the humiliation chosen for him by his Father. He was God, yet he took the form of a servant. He was equal to God but he considered this equality to be nothing, becoming obedient to the point of death and death on a cross. He was rich, but he became poor. He did not have to depend on anyone, yet he never did his own will. He was the Master, but through suffering he learned the meaning of obedience (to God’s will). He was sinless, yet he permitted himself to be insulted as a sinner. He never threatened anyone, yet he allowed himself to be condemned to the most extreme suffering. The lessons Jesus wishes to teach us are obvious. We must see to it that our…life, well lived, reflects the same decisions (ES, 1951).
Do we want to be true disciples of Jesus? Then let us imitate him. He responded kindly even to sinners; he was always mild, always gentle…Let us remember that humble and meek words, in response to rudeness and rejection, are seed which will sprout and produce much good (VPC25).
Jesus is the way (…): poverty, fatigue, obscurity, silence, hunger, thirst, suffering, death….I want to do everything possible to imitate you, my Jesus. May I reach the point of “it is no longer I who live, but you who live in me” (Spiritual Notes, September 1963).
Mother Thecla was a disciple of Christ the Master. She suggests that we imitate him in a concrete way by adopting his sentiments and attitudes.
- Do I take the gentle and humble Master as my point of reference in my daily life...?
- Is it he who thinks, wills, loves and works in me?
Prayer from the Scriptures
The Prologue of St. John Jn. 1:11-18
Prayer from the Pauline Family
Jesus, Master, sanctify my mind and increase my faith.
Jesus, teaching in the Church, draw everyone to your school.
Jesus, Master, deliver me from error, from vain thoughts and from eternal darkness.
Jesus, Way between the Father and us, I offer you all and await all from you.
Jesus, Way of sanctity, make me your faithful imitator.
Jesus, Way render me perfect as your Father who is in heaven.
Jesus, Life, live in me so that I may live in you.
Jesus, Life, do not permit me to be separated from you.
Jesus, Life, may I live eternally in the joy of your love.
Jesus, Truth may I be light for the world.
Jesus, Way may I be an example and model for souls.
Jesus, Life may my presence bring grace and consolation everywhere.
Blessed James Alberione’s Thought
Mother Thecla read the Gospel so as to know, imitate and love Jesus the Divine Master (…). She prayed to the Divine Master and imitated him; she was intimately united to him.
Alberione, Testimony, April 4, 1968
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