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Wednesday of the Twenty-sixth Week in Ordinary Time
Job 9: 1-12, 14-16
Psalm 88:10bc-11,12-13, 14-15
Luke 9:57-62
In today˅s readings, Job, wrestling with his life˅s traumas, continues to believe that
ˈGod is wise in heart and mighty in strength.ˉ In the Gospel, we hear the disciples
saying that they will definitely follow Jesus, BUT they have a long list of ˈthings to
doˉ that they believe must come first. Jesus says, ˈNo one who sets a hand to the
plow and looks to what was left behind is fit for the Kingdom of God.ˉ
Today is the feast of St. Mother Theodore Guerin, who was canonized by Pope
Benedict XVI in October 2006. She is not a particularly well-known saint, but is she
part of the growing list of American saints and a woman religious of great integrity,
boundless energy and deep faith. I was educated by the religious community she
founded, and last year, it was a great privilege to visit her birth site on the Brittany
coast and reflect on how this woman born over two centuries ago has impacted my
life through the ministry of the sisters who came after her.
I am in awe of the strength, courage and trust in God˅s Providence that character-
ized the life of Anne-Therese Guerin, born in Etables-sur-Mer, France, in 1798. She
surely kept her ˈhand to the plowˉ and never looked back. She, like Job, knew that
ˈGod is wise in heart and mighty in strength.ˉ She was a strong woman ˀ and the
bishop of Vincennes, Indiana, not accustomed to being in the presence of a well-
educated woman with a mind of her own, threatened her with excommunication after
he challenged her authority over her community and even ordered her sisters to re-
move her. They declined to obey the bishop who was later removed by the Vatican.
Shortly after her canonization, in a NY Times op-ed piece entitled ˈSaints That Were-
n˅t,ˉ Fr. James Martin, S.J., noted that today Mother Theodore˅s Sisters of Provi-
dence of St. Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana, number over 400 and work in 10 states,
the District of Columbia, China and Taiwan. He also noted, ˈˎthat while most saints
led lives of quiet service, some led the life of the noisy prophet, speaking the truth to