Homily (Reflection) for the Memorial of Saint Monica (27th August, 2018) on the Gospel and the Memorial
2Thess 1:1-5.11-12;
Ps 95:1-5. (R. v.3);
Matt 23:13-22.

Saint Monica was born on 331 AD in Thagaste and was married to a pagan, Patricius at a very tender age. Her children were Saint Augustine (August 28), Navigius, and Perpetua. She endured her husband’s and her mother’s-in-law bad temper.  Although Patricius criticized her for her charity and piety, but he always respected her. She later won him and her mother-in-law to Christianity. She stopped Augustine from eating and sleeping in her house when he accepted the Manichean heresy and was living immoral life. Monica readmitted him after a vision that assured her that Augustine would return to the faith. She stayed too close to Augustine with prayers and fasting than he wanted. Augustine tricked her and left for Rome. On her arrival, she learnt that he had left for Milan. She did not give-up. In Milan, Augustine came under the influence of the bishop, Saint Ambrose, who also became Monica’s spiritual director. Saint Ambrose baptized Augustine and several of his friends at Easter, 387. Soon after, they left for Africa. She became ill and suffered severely for nine days and died on 387 AD in Ostia Antica. She is the patron Saint of Alcoholics, Married women, and Mothers.
Topic: Woe to you....
Today’s gospel is a continuation of last Saturday’s gospel in which Jesus urged His listeners to do and to follow what the scribes and the Pharisees taught because they occupied Moses’ seat. He also warned them against following their example because they did not practice what they taught.
In today’s gospel, Jesus summarized them by naming them hypocrites. He denounced them and also proclaimed woes on them. Their sins include locking people out of the kingdom of heaven, suffering so much to make a convert only to make him/her worse child of hell than themselves, and also feeding the people with false teachings.
Ensure that no one is prevented from following God through your actions, words, and omissions. We celebrate the memorial of Saint Monica who did not prevent anybody from following God instead she brought people to Christ. Every person can be a good channel for the salvation of others. Saint John warns, “Look to yourselves, that you may not lose what you have worked for, but may win a full reward” (2Jn 1:8). There will be woes to anyone who fails to be a channel of salvation to others.
Bible Reading: 2Jn 7-11.
Thought for today: You ought to be a channel of salvation.
Let us pray: Lord, help us to be your sincere children – Amen.
Saint Monica – Pray for us.
You are free to share this reflection with others if you consider it worthy.

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