Reflection: 3rd Tuesday; Sts. Timothy and Titus

Mass: Tuesday, January 26, 2010
First Reading: 2 Tm 1:1-8
Responsorial: Psalm 96:1-2a, 2b-3, 7-8a, 1
Gospel: Mk 3:31-35

When celebrating Mass on the day when the lives of saints are commemorated, the Church, in all her wisdom, strives to incorporate the best of all worlds—and today is a perfect example.

Today is the feast of Sts. Timothy and Titus which adds a number of options to choose from when selecting scriptures for Mass. As suggested in Living with Christ, today’s readings are drawn from the 3rd Tuesday in Ordinary Time as well as the Saint’s feast.

As expected when such an event happens, a unique combination of scripture results. For those who prepare daily reflections, this presents an interesting challenge that compels one to discover the hidden wisdom that we can reflect on and apply to our daily lives.

So, here’s one possible perspective…

In the first reading, Paul affirms Timothy’s faith as passed to him by his grandmother, Lois, and mother, Eunice. The other option for today’s first reading—Paul’s letter to Titus—includes the phrase, “Titus, my true child in our common faith.”

In the Gospel, Jesus states that those who do the will of God and are his family—mother, brother and sister.

Perhaps this combination of scripture reveals a theme about who we are and how our actions define that identity.

Not only do we take on the name of Christians, we also are Marianists—specifically, Marianist religious brothers. So what does it mean to be a “brother to all people”? How does this identity compel us to action?

An obvious area where we serve as a brother to all is in our public ministries. It’s easier to see how we serve as brothers in ministry together at our various institutions. We, like many who have done before us in our rich history, excel in our ministries, do great work, are committed to the mission, and are hard-working professionals—wonderful examples of selfless giving to our world.

When we come home, we are spent! But, we are reminded that when we come home, our role as brother doesn’t stop when we leave our ministry. Our gifts of presence, patience and openness to one another  is need much more here in our home.

I often wondered why the theme for our province assembly in 2007 was “Becoming Brothers.” For a religious congregation who professes that community life, discipleship of equals and mixed composition are sacred values, becoming “brothers” to one another is expected to be a reality. Or, perhaps it is because that becoming “brothers” to one another in community can be one of the most difficult challenges of religious life that requires a lifetime of faithfulness in seeking that goal.

We are blessed with numerous gifts, talents and personalities. Our diversity is rich. Yet, it is that same diversity that challenges us to be faithful to our identity of being a community of “brothers” to one another in one heart and mind.

Doing the little things for one another is what makes for good community. Trusting that we will be present for one another at prayer, work, play, community and calling each one of us to be more than we think we can become supports one another in being faithful.

Let us pray that we make this new day another opportunity where we can be faithful to our role of being a “brother to all people” and reveal that identity through our actions.

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