It is 15th October 2016. We celebrate the memorial of St Teresa of Avila, the Virgin and the Doctor of the Church. She was a woman of prayer, contemplation and reformation. She reformed herself personally and the Carmelite Order at large. Her entire life was built on a deep personal encounter with God, through compassion and contemplation. She wrote, “Prayer is the doorway to great graces; if this door is closed, I do not see how God can bestow any graces. Prayer and self-indulgence do not go together. God alone is sufficient.” She wrote her spiritual life story under the titles of: The Way of Perfection; The Interior Castle; and The Conceptions of the Love of God. Her body and her heart are incorruptible. She is the patroness of Spain, and invoked against headaches. The readings are from Ephesians 1:15-23; and the Gospel Luke 12:8-12. In the first reading, St. Paul prays to God for three favours for the people invoking God to give a deep knowledge of God, an unlimited hope and to have a heart to accept the grace of God. He believed that this will lead the believer to the enlightenment that one requires to love Christ and to belong to the Mystical Body of Christ. The responsorial Psalm prays, “You gave your Son power over the works of your hand.” (Ps.8:7). The Gospel teaches us that we do not need to fear standing for God. We need to clarify our stand for God through our merciful acts in the world. The Holy Spirit is our strength and protection in accepting and living for Christ. When we begin to lose hope, we begin to deny the power and the operations of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Our hope comes by charity. When our hope dims in our lives, we reject Christ himself. So we need to nourish our hope through the faith we have in the Lord Jesus. May the Lord help us to deepen our relationship with God through our prayerful life and contemplation like that of St. Teresa of Avila. Have a good day.

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