MCCA

St. Bertilla Boscardin

Anna Francesca Boscardin was born October 6, 1888 in Brendola, Italy. She lived a very difficult childhood in a poor peasant family with a violently abusive alcoholic father. She had very little education, and worked as a house servant as a girl and was considered not to be very intelligent. Her family nicknamed her “the goose” due to her lack of intelligence.

However, things changed somewhat when she entered the Sisters of Saint Dorothy, Daughters of the Sacred Heart in 1904, taking the name Bertilla. After working in the convent’s kitchen and laundry for three years, she trained as a nurse.

She worked in the children’s ward of the sisters’ hospital in Treviso, and quickly became the children’s favorite due to her simple and gentle way. She cared for wounded Italian soldiers during World War I, even staying with patients while the area was being bombed.

An envious supervisor reassigned Bertilla, now popular among the patients, to the hospital laundry. When her mother-general heard of this, she made Bertilla head of the children’s ward in 1919. Bertilla died three years later of cancer.

She was canonized in 1961 by Pope John XXIII before a crowd that included many of her former patients, and many miracles have been reported at her tomb.


Exodus 17:8-13

8 Then came Am'alek and fought with Israel at Reph'idim.
9 And Moses said to Joshua, "Choose for us men, and go out, fight with Am'alek; tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in my hand."
10 So Joshua did as Moses told him, and fought with Am'alek; and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill.
11 Whenever Moses held up his hand, Israel prevailed; and whenever he lowered his hand, Am'alek prevailed.
12 But Moses' hands grew weary; so they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat upon it, and Aaron and Hur held up his hands, one on one side, and the other on the other side; so his hands were steady until the going down of the sun.
13 And Joshua mowed down Am'alek and his people with the edge of the sword.


Luke 18:1-8

1 And he told them a parable, to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart.
2 He said, "In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor regarded man;
3 and there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, `Vindicate me against my adversary.'
4 For a while he refused; but afterward he said to himself, `Though I neither fear God nor regard man,
5 yet because this widow bothers me, I will vindicate her, or she will wear me out by her continual coming.'"
6 And the Lord said, "Hear what the unrighteous judge says.
7 And will not God vindicate his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them?
8 I tell you, he will vindicate them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of man comes, will he find faith on earth?"


Psalms 121:1-8

1 I lift up my eyes to the hills. From whence does my help come?
2 My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth.
3 He will not let your foot be moved, he who keeps you will not slumber.
4 Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
5 The LORD is your keeper; the LORD is your shade on your right hand.
6 The sun shall not smite you by day, nor the moon by night.
7 The LORD will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life.
8 The LORD will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and for evermore.


Second Reading

2 Timothy 3:14--4:2

14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it
15 and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings which are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.
16 All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,
17 that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.
1 I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom:
2 preach the word, be urgent in season and out of season, convince, rebuke, and exhort, be unfailing in patience and in teaching.


Grant, Lord, that we may never lose heart

Sunday 20th October 2019
29th Sunday in Ordinary Time (C)

Ex. 17:8-13;  Ps. 121(120):1-2,3-4,5-6,7-8
2 Tim. 3:14-4:2;  Lk. 18:1-8    (Ps Wk I)


“When the Son of Man comes, will he find any faith on earth?” Jesus’ question may generate many different emotions in our human hearts. The power of the Gospel created the culture and civilization, the way of life of Europe. Animated by faith, the art and architecture, music and literature of Christianized Europe created an incredible array of experssions of the Gospel and the Catholic faith.

But now Europe is almost merely a museum recalling a past era of faith.


Jesus’ question seems all too pertinent to much of the modern world. Even the most traditionally Catholic countries in Europe, are in many ways post-Christian deserts as far as the Gospels and Christianity are concerned.

Those of us who mourn for Europe and for the Church in many parts of the world must feel the “need to pray continually and never lose heart.” If we still faithful Catholics lose heart and despair of the power of prayer, we will have failed in our mission to be the light of the world and the salt of the earth.


Grant, Lord, that we may never lose heart as we try to pray for the success of the transforming work of the Gospel.