Ezek 2:8–3:4; Ps 118: (R. v.103); Matt 18:1-5.10.12-14. Saint Clare of Assisi (16th July, 1194 – 11th August, 1253) was born in Assisi as Chiara Offreduccio. The preaching of Saint Francis of Assisi during Lent when she was 18 made her sought for his guidance. She joined the convent of the Benedictine nuns of San Paulo, near Bastia, under Francis’ orders. Her father tried unsuccessfully to force her back into his home. Other women who desired to be brides of Jesus later joined her and were known as the “Poor Ladies of San Damiano”. They lived a simple life of austerity, seclusion, and poverty, according to a Rule which Francis gave them as a Second Order. They wore no shoes, ate no meat, lived in a poor house, and kept silent most of the time. Their lives consisted of manual labour and prayer. The city of Assisi was protected from the attack of an army of rough soldiers from Frederick II in 1224 through her intercession before the Blessed Sacrament. At Pope Innocent's request, her process of canonization began immediately after her death. She was canonized as Saint Clare of Assisi in 1255 by Pope Alexander IV. The Order of Poor Ladies was officially changed to the Order of Saint Clare in 1263 by Pope Urban IV. She is the patron saint of television, eye disease, goldsmiths, and laundry. Topic: True greatness. The disciples asked Jesus in today’s gospel, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” Jesus put a child among them and told them that one must become like a child to enter the kingdom of heaven, and to be the greatest requires childlike humility. He also warns against despising children. Jesus highlights among other things childlike humility. This goes with lots of blessings, cf. Prov 3:34; 1Pt 5:5; Jas 4:6. God decorates the humble with victory, leads them in what is right, and also teaches them His way, cf. Ps 25:9; 149:4b. Their deliverance is assured, cf. 2Sam 22:28; Ps 18:27. Jesus warns, “whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted” (Matt 23:12; cf. Lk 14:11. 18:14). And the Psalmist writes, “Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labour in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain” (Ps 127:1). Let us therefore follow the example of Saint Clare and humble ourselves under the mighty hand of God, that in due time He may exalt us, cf. 1Pt 5:6. True greatness comes from God to those who are truly humble. Bible Reading: 1Pt 5:6-11; 1Cor 1:18-31. Thought for today: Pride brings disgrace, but humility wisdom, cf. Prov 11:2. Let us pray: Lord, give us the grace of humility – Amen. Saint Clare – Pray for us. You are free to share this reflection with others if you consider it worthy. For more homilies (reflections): Visit our website: www.thepulpitonline.com Like us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/thepulpitonline Follow us on Twitter: www.twitter.com/thepulpitonline Join our WhatsApp Group via: +234 810 298 6313 Send us Email: thepulpitonline@gmail.com To Contact and/or to support this ministry: Tel: +234 813 305 0302 Email: thepulpitonline@gmail.com May God bless you all+

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