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Karen Brink, OSB

Sister Glenna Smith entered the Benedictine Sisters of Virginia in 1977 and has served her community and their ministries for 40+ years as teacher, prefect, camp director, counselor, principal and administrator, school psychologist, member of various boards, formation director, monastery coordinator, and subprioress. She was privileged to serve the Federation of Saint Scholastica as president from 2010-2014.

Sister Glenna's reflections will begin June 7 and continue through August 2020.

Week of July 5

14th Sunday in Ordinary Time
July 5
Glenna Smith, OSB, Benedictine Sisters of Virgina, Bristow, VA

Matthew 11:25-30
Do you really know Jesus? Has Jesus revealed God to you? Do you know about the promises of Christ? There are gifts, amazing, extravagant, joyful, glorious, salvific, and enduring, gifts beyond anything we can ask or imagine – and they come to the demands of Love.

I had a friend, now with God, who was a devout Southern Baptist, and she asked me as we sat in a restaurant one day in the very early 1980’s, near the Orlando International Airport, if I was saved. I replied that I was saved, and she said, “How do you know?” My response was quick and certain: I knew I was saved because I believed in the promises of Christ. That response was a true statement. I am coming to see, however, that the promises of Christ carry with them implications about which I knew very little forty years ago – and don’t really comprehend all these years later.

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Week of June 28

13th Sunday in Ordinary Time
June 28
Glenna Smith, OSB, Benedictine Sisters of Virgina, Bristow, VA

Matthew 10:37-42
Today’s Gospel passage sheds some light on last Sunday’s command to “fear not” and to proclaim the message of Jesus in the light and from the rooftops. Among other things, this Sunday’s Gospel says, “…whoever does not take up [their] cross and follow after me is not worthy of me.” Only the One who was conceived, born, lived, suffered, was murdered, and rose for humanity really knows what is required to be worthy. This call and commitment we have taken up to be Christian is nothing to take lightly. Did we mean it when we renewed our Baptismal promises at Easter?

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Week of June 21

12th Sunday in Ordinary Time
June 21
Glenna Smith, OSB, Benedictine Sisters of Virgina, Bristow, VA

Matthew 10:26-33
The demands of love can be daunting, even frightening, “What I say to you in the darkness, speak in the light; what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops.” Jesus’ commands and promises can strengthen us in the midst of our fear; regardless, proclaiming Jesus’ message certainly requires faith, hope, love, and committed, grace-given courage, particularly in the face of fear. “Love one another” sounds well and good, but “love one another as I have loved you,” can have crucifixion overtones – albeit, on the way to resurrection, for sure.

I must admit, the way of the cross scares me. It always has. I am drawn to the glorious, joyful, mysterious, resurrected, love present in Christ, but the suffering, cruel, mysterious, crucifixion realities are frightening. Is it grace and faith that allows us, keeps us to the path to resurrection? Is it human fear and doubt that has the capacity to keep us fixated on the suffering and death of Jesus’ crucifixion? For us Christians, there is only one way. Jesus is our way.

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Week of June 14

Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ
June 14
Glenna Smith, OSB, Benedictine Sisters of Virgina, Bristow, VA

This Feast of Corpus Christi, of the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ, can take us to the heart of God’s gift to us and to our part in the Incarnation. Yes, the Eucharist is the source and summit of our life in Christ. Yes, the Blessed Sacrament is the real presence of Jesus. Yes, we who believe and who eat and drink of his flesh will live forever. Yes, we do believe.

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Week of June 7

Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity
June 7
Glenna Smith, OSB, Benedictine Sisters of Virginia

John 3:16-18
While all of the Gospel is “Good News,” the tradition and readings of Sunday, the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity, are particularly “Good News” for us. The love of God, the way God’s love could be generated and shared within, between, and among the three persons of the Trinity may help teach us crucial aspects about God’s love, about God’s extravagant, eternal, dynamic and relational love. It is dynamic and relational amongst the three-persons of the Trinity, which is self-perpetuating and eternal, and it is dynamic and relational in its movement to, through, and for humanity and all creation.

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