WORD of the DAY
For this reason, I remind you to stir into flame the gift of God that you have through the imposition of my hands. For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice but rather of power and love and self-control. So do not be ashamed of your testimony to our Lord, nor of me, a prisoner for his sake; but bear your share of hardship for the gospel with the strength that comes from God. (2 Timothy 1: 6-8)
Today we remember Saints Timothy and Titus, disciples of Paul and close collaborators with him for the spread of the Gospel, and Bishops of the primitive Church. In the text of today’s first reading, we see the affection of Paul for his disciple as he encourages Timothy who was rather timid by temperament and somewhat fearful in the face of the persecutions taking place. Timothy had to find the first and basic motive for courage within himself, in the grace of God through the charism of his priesthood. In that sacrament, the power of God had strengthened in him a selfless love for others. In view of this, Timothy must not be ashamed to witness to Christ or to be ashamed because of Paul’s imprisonment, but rather must be ready to suffer together with the apostle and other confessors of the faith.
This interior disposition is constantly nourished by the grace or charism of the sacrament, which is not magical or works independently of free personal adhesion, otherwise it could be extinguished like a fire that is not sustained. Paul exhorts Timothy to stir into flame the fire of this grace.
The voice of St. Ignatius of Antioch
Being imitators of God, revive in the blood of God, the work congenial to you that you have done perfectly.