Commentary on the Gospel of

Fr. Manuel Ogalla, CMF

When I was in my own process of vocational discernment, there was a Claretian Missionary who really helped me to discover the great gift of our religious vocation. His name is Juan Carlos Martos cmf. In one moment of that process, I was really terrified because I did not know what God was asking me to do. My life and my mind were like stormy waters forcing me to lose all my confidence and give up in front of too many difficulties, too many doubts, too many question marks, too much insecurity… I found myself alone in the deep blue sea sinking and without any hand to seize. But in that very situation and in that existential struggle, I remember a conversation with Fr. Juan Carlos that made me stand up and embrace with enthusiasm the project that God had prepared for me. His wise words were inspired in the Gospel we are reading today: “The enemy of faith is not doubt but only fear. Trust in God, take courage and do not be afraid”.

Those words have accompanied me during my whole life. And today, praying with this Gospel, I certify the great value of this message. Fear is one of the most insidious vices for our life and our faith. Daily we can face different struggles and difficulties, problems and tensions that threaten our relationship with God. Economic crisis, serious sickness, breaking up of our marriage, an unforeseen death of a close relative… different situations that seem furious storms in a dangerous dark sea. In front of those threats, fear can become the Lord of our lives, but it is in those difficult moments and in those fearsome situations that Jesus stretches out his hand, catches ours and prevents us from sinking. Jesus Christ is always ready to walk on the waters of our difficulties and struggles to make us rediscover the great gift of his project of love for us. Jesus Christ, in the middle of our tensions and fears, finds out the way to make us hear his merciful voice saying: “Take courage, it is I, do not be afraid”.

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