Saint Paul Miki and Companions

Today we honour the memory of Saint Paul Miki and 26 companions were persecuted and crucified in Japan for being Catholics.  Let us pray that as a result of their example and their witness we may come to appreciate the faith for which they readily laid down their lives.

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One of the great milestones of human history must be man’s first journey to the moon.  As the astronauts of Apollo 8 approached their destination, people all over the world wondered what they would say about this awesome experience.  In fact, the first words from astronaut William Anders were the opening words from the Book of Genesis: In the beginning, God made the heavens and the earth (Gn 1:1).

Seeing the Earth from the vastness of space, the astronauts couldn’t help but acknowledge God.  If we think for a moment about the wonder of our world, we too will be drawn to thank him.  What are we to make of the intricate design of living things, from our own bodies, right down to the tiniest microbe?  Evidence tells us that life is the result of evolutionary processes lasting millions of years, but faith tells us that it is no accident.

No matter where we turn, the complexity and splendour of our world tells us that we have a Creator.  If that is so, then our lives belong to God.  We don’t exist for ourselves alone, but to give him glory and to be in a close, personal relationship with him.  That should be wonderful news for us, because without God’s presence, life seems random and meaningless; like the teeming chaos before creation.  But when we are in communion with God, he brings order and peace to our lives.  We begin to see that we’re not an accident.  We are part of a grand design that is far bigger than any of us can conceive.

And so let us thank God today for the beauty and the glory of his creation.  And may we be good stewards of the gifts he has entrusted to us.

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