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Association of the Miraculous Medal
Gospel Reflections for August 20

Besides her great privilege of being the Mother of God, Mary was also her Son’s first disciple. She is often called the Model, or Exemplar of the Church. Following her example, we walk with her through the Gospels as we reflect on her response to God in her life.

August 20, 2017 — Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Matthew 15:21-28
 Father Oscar Lukefahr, C.M.

Little Timmy came back from summer camp, and his parents wanted to know if he’d been homesick. “Nah,” he said, “Only the kids that had dogs got homesick.” In a lot of homes, dogs are like one of the family. We should keep this in mind as we listen to Jesus in today’s Gospel.

Jesus came to save all nations, but he began with the Jews. In the Gospel, a foreign woman asks Jesus to heal her daughter. Jesus seems to be very harsh in speaking of non‑Jews as dogs, but the expression on his face surely softened the words. He must have been smiling, trying to draw the Canaanite woman into a deeper faith. She must have smiled back as she gave a witty response, about dogs eating with the family, that caused Jesus to praise her faith and cure her daughter. He thereby indicated that his mission would soon include the whole world.

Jesus, after his Resurrection, told his followers to preach the Gospel to all nations. We are his followers, and we should want to bring the Gospel to others. We don’t have to go to foreign lands. We can begin at home. Parents and grandparents are concerned about the health and education of their children. Even more important is the spiritual welfare of the children. By good example, by knowing the Faith and talking about it, by finding time to pray as a family, parents and grandparents bring Jesus into the home.

This might seem insignificant. But in 1830, when Mary wanted to bring the world to Jesus and his saving grace, she began by giving the Miraculous Medal to a humble Daughter of Charity. It was a small beginning, but in less than a decade, tens of millions of medals were bringing Jesus and his grace to the whole world! With Mary’s help, we can make small beginnings that bring Jesus to many who desperately need him.

One final word about dogs: They can show us God’s unconditional love. (Dog spelled backward is God.) We need to bring God’s unconditional love to others... a beautiful way to spread the Gospel!







             Read last week's reflection.