A Clean Mind and Heart
What is more important: having clean hands or having a clean mind and heart? In this time of the pandemic, we are told to frequently wash our hands then disinfect them with alcohol in order to avoid the spread of the corona virus and its variants. Whenever we eat, it is important to wash our hands, but all the time, it is more important and significant to have a clean mind and heart. In the Gospel, as Jesus dines at the home of a Pharisee, He is questioned about His failure to observe the Jewish ritual washings. Jesus challenges His host and the other Pharisees for their missing the point of ablutions. The rituals of washing are to signify that the person is pure in intention and mind. Jesus criticizes the emphasis which some of the Jewish leaders put on legalistic practice while missing the relationship which the practices are meant to deepen. Our Lord Jesus gives great emphasis and concern on what is inside each of us for it is the source of good intentions and attitudes which will lead into good actions Somebody once said, “Beauty is not about having the fairest skin or the prettiest face; it’s about having the purest heart. So, don’t take mirrors too seriously. Your true reflection is in your heart.”
“You, too, can be a saint. But you need to want it with your whole heart, and, if you do not yet desire it, ask the Lord for it with insistence.”Blessed Carlo Acutis
Today the Church celebrates the memory of a young boy named Carlo Acutis. He was beatified last year 2020. Carlo was born on May 3, 1991 in London to Andrea Acutis and Antonia Salzano. His parents were financially well-off and worked in Germany and the United Kingdom before settling down at Milan in 1991. At a young age, Carlo demonstrated great interest in Catholic churches and often asked to see them. At the age of 7 he received his first Holy Communion and was commonly observed praying in front of the Tabernacle before and after Mass. Carlo was deeply interested in computers and taught himself how to code and build websites while still in primary school. He was also known to give away his pocket money to the poor and to speak up in defense of the disabled. He had a habit of inviting kids to his house whose parents were divorcing to support them. Carlo used his knowledge of computers and coding to build websites for Catholic organizations. His most popular website was one that listed miracles from around the world based on a catalog he compiled since age 11. He completed the site shortly before his death. When the young Carlo developed leukemia as a teenager, he offered up his suffering for Pope Benedict XVI and the Church. He was quoted as saying, “I offer all the suffering I will have to suffer for the Lord, the Pope, and the Church.” He died in 2006 at the age of 15 due to a severe leukemia. This is a young boy who responded to God’s call, purified his mind and heart in order to do much good for others. Towards his death he was heard saying, “I am happy to die because I lived my life without wasting even a minute of it on anything unpleasing to God.” He challenged and encouraged fellow young people to be saints when he said, “You, too, can be a saint. But you need to want it with your whole heart, and, if you do not yet desire it, ask the Lord for it with insistence!”
Brothers and sisters, let us purify our minds and hearts for the Lord so that we can live and serve with good and holy intentions. Through the intercession of the young Blessed Carlo Acutis, let us offer our prayers of praise, thanksgiving, and petitions to the Lord.
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