The message for today’s celebration is about God’s love and concern for us and calls us to respond in faith and trust. The first reading (Isaiah 49:14–15) describes a mother’s gentle care for her child and this is like God’s love for us. In the Gospel reading (Matthew 6:24–34) tells us that everything in life is under the care of our heavenly Father.
Our fears are real enough and come in a variety of forms, pressure and anxiety. As babies we were born pretty content and free from anxiety, totally dependent on the care of our mothers. As we matured, our contentment was replaced by wants shaped by environment, upbringing and a whole host of other variables. We begin to concentrate on fulfilling our wants even as Jesus reminds us to “seek first his kingdom” and trust that we are of more value than the birds of the air and the lilies of the field so wonderfully cared for by a loving God.
This year the month of February gives us four Sundays before the beginning of Lent on March 1. Our concentration on the Sermon on the Mount and especially the invitation of Jesus this last Sunday— “seek first the kingdom of God”—sets the stage for the experience of Lent as a season of conversion and baptismal preparation for the elect and a time of penance for those of us already baptized. This seeking will bring us to Easter knowing in our very bones “the day of salvation.”
—Sister Dominica Rocchio, SC
Sr. Dominica, most recently a member of the Congregation’s leadership team, has ministered in education as a teacher, principal, and in administrative positions in the archdioceses of New York and Newark, NJ. In Newark, she served as Superintendent of Schools and Secretary for Education. At present, she works on Special Projects for the Congregation.