Offering help for body and soul...
Reflections on the readings for the Memorial of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini (November 13, 2019): WIS 6:1-11; PS 82:3-4,6-7; LK 17:11-19
MISSIO offers “Mission In Scripture” to nurture a missionary heart, providing reflections on the missionary themes in the readings of Sundays, Feast Days and Holy Days
Born Francesca Cabrini, St. Frances Xavier Cabrini looked after the well being of great numbers of immigrants in both North and South America.
Yet she also knew what it meant to be disappointed in her hopes. As a young woman she was turned away from an order of sisters because they thought she lacked the good health to be a teacher. When, after heading an orphanage for years, she established the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the Pope discouraged her plans to serve in China. Instead he told her that her gifts would be better spent in helping the vast number of Italian and other immigrants heading to the United States. She gave her will to God and served His people in a variety of ways. After initial hardships, she and her order had great success across this country as well as in South America. Institutions including hospitals, schools and orphanages multiplied. “Those who keep the holy precepts hallowed shall be found holy, and those learned in them will have a ready response. Desire therefore my words; long for them and you shall be instructed” (Wisdom 6:10-11).
Mother Cabrini’s determination and devotion to God’s people is shown in the 30 trans-Atlantic Ocean journeys she took in order to meet her responsibilities – in spite of her life-long fear of drowning. She died at age 67 in 1917 and was the first naturalized American citizen to be declared a saint. The Church has also proclaimed her the patron of immigrants.
Suggested missionary action: Let us ask St. Frances Xavier Cabrini to assist our efforts to help those in need. Let us also pray for her to guide and guard all immigrants.