Jesus leads His disciples and a “great crowd” towards the small town of Nain, near His home town of Nazareth.  As He draws near to a city, Jesus (referred to by Luke as “the Lord”, meaning God) meets a large funeral procession of a young man who had died, leaving his grieving widowed mother in poverty; without her son to provide, the women would be destitute, having to rely on charity and vulnerable to predators (Mark 12:38-40).

Jesus, who has suffered and will suffer, has compassion for the widow and takes charitable action. He instructs her not to weep and then steps forward to touch the bier (a wooden board used to carry the dead who are wrapped in linen). This was a shocking act, particularly for a rabbi for Mosaic law stated that coming in contact with the dead left a person ritually unclean for a week (Num 19:11-19).

With a simple word, Jesus calls the young man to “arise” from the dead; the dead man is brought back to life and even begins to speak. Jesus gives the son to his mother; this is both a replay of the great prophet Elijah’s raising the widow’s son (1 Kgs 17:20) and a prefigurement of the giving John to be the son of the Virgin Mother at the Passion (John 19:29) and Christ’s own resurrection.

Filled with fear by the sight of the dead rising and the supernatural power of Christ, the people proclaim that Jesus is a “great prophet” and that God has “visited His people.”

Awed by Jesus Christ – Jesus Christ, the Son of Man, full of Divine Mercy, understands suffering and is filled with the human emotion of compassion for the plight of the poor widow.  Divine Leader and Protector, Jesus takes decisive charitable action.  Jesus, Omniscient, knows how to raise the dead, and Omnipotent, has the power to do so. Divine Prophet, Jesus gives a powerful symbolic sign in replaying Elijah and in previewing His Resurrection. Jesus, the Son of God, strikes fear and awe in a large crowd, causing them to glorify God.

Being a Heroic Catholic Man

1) The Gospels document Christ’s use of His fearsome supernatural power to perform miracles. Reflect on the truth that the Risen Christ continues to have Creation-changing power and miraculously intervenes even today.  Be awed.

2) Christ understands suffering, has compassion for all people and takes action to relieve suffering. Commit to build awareness of the suffering of those around you and to take charitable action.

3) In all times and all places, men have the good natural desire and ability to provide and protect women and children. Despite the poisonous attempts to divide men and women in today’s decaying culture, Christ’s powerful example for men to protect and provide for women and children remains true.  Commit to take concrete action in your life to protect and provide for vulnerable women and children.

Spiritual Practices – Include in Today’s Prayers

Sacred Mystery of Rosary – The Glorious Mysteries

Daily Devotion – The Blessed Trinity

Virtue of the Day – Charity