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This week in the Gospel, Jesus admonishes Mary, the sister of Lazarus: “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things.” (Lk. 10:41)  For most people, this Gospel passage is a simple and straightforward lesson about being so preoccupied with the small things in life that we miss our true purpose.

Yet for some of us these can seem like difficult and even painful words.

This is because, for the more than 18% of the U.S. population that suffer from anxiety disorders, we don’t choose worry and anxiety—it chooses us.

The Invisible Crowd

Think about that number for a second. It means that if you are sitting in a pew at Sunday Mass with eight other people, there is a good chance that one or two of them suffer from anxiety disorders. Add to that people who suffer from depression and a host of other mental illnesses. I guarantee that mental illness affects someone you know, someone you love...maybe even you.

In my encounter with one of our parishioners, I came to realize that many people have not deeply understood that the Holy Mass is a stupendous mystery and the highest prayer. Could this be the reason why some people do their private devotions like saying the Rosary while the Priest is celebrating Mass?  I have heard some argue that the Mass is not in the bible. Some say it is a repetition of the same words and actions by the Priest. And very many, especially the young people, say that they do not feel anything during Mass and it makes them bored. For a few, the Mass is for the old and for those who are retired who have not much to do. Is that true??? Ok, let’s talk about it.

I want to say without mincing words that as the force of gravity is responsible for the suspension of the Earth Planet on its Orbit, so is the Holy Mass responsible for humanity’s existence.

HOMILY OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS

St Peter's Square - Sunday, 12 June 2016

“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me” (Gal 2:19).  In these words, the Apostle Paul powerfully expresses the mystery of the Christian life, which can be summed up in the paschal dynamic of death and resurrection received at baptism. Indeed, through immersion in water, each of us, as it were, dies and is buried with Christ (cf. Rom 6:3-4), and remerging, shows forth new life in the Holy Spirit. This rebirth embraces every aspect of our lives: even sickness, suffering and death are taken up in Christ and in him find their ultimate meaning. Today, on the Jubilee day devoted to the sick and bearers of disabilities, this word of life has a special resonance for our assembly.

[Over the weekend, thousands of readers were moved by the images of a young Carmelite nun, Sister Cecilia, whose countenance radiated joy as she approached her culmination. That story, which originated in Aleteia’s Spanish-language edition, culled from the Facebook page Curia General de los Carmelitas Descalzos, received a helpful clarification from the Carmelites, who have subsequently granted Aleteia permission to tell the inspiring story of Sister Cecilia’s joy in the face of suffering. This is, again, translated from the Spanish – Ed]

Photos circulating on the internet of a dying Carmelite sister are certainly, as they say, worth a thousand words. But the images that have traveled around the world are only part of the story. For those who lived her suffering beside her, the nun’s testimony of joy and peace was just as radiant as her face.

"Everything you were looking for was right there with you all along".  Wizard of Oz

I have always been a seeker my entire life. As a young child I would almost always  lose my homework going from school to home. It became a source of discontent for my teacher and myself, so much so that I would fear going home only to find that I couldn't find what I needed. So yes, I became that "special child" that needed to have his homework safety pinned to his shirt to make sure it would make it home.  I still remember the first time they pinned it to my back, how I freaked out and gasped when I got home because I searched in my backpack and in my books, but I couldn't find it. It wasn't until then that my mom noticed that it was on me. She said, "son don't worry it's been with you all along."