Feast of St. Lawrence August 10
In the year 257 St. Pope Sixtus appointed seven deacons in Rome.
St. Lawrence was his first choice.
He appointed him to distribute revenues to the poor.
In a year to 258, the government was in debt,
and the Roman Emperor Valerian
confiscated the property of Christians.
As St. Lawrence was the administrator of the Church’s goods,
he sold all the property and distributed it to the poor
as commanded by Pope Sixtus.
He even sold sacred vessels.
When commanded by the prefect of Rome
to surrender the treasures of the Church,
St. Lawrence promised to show him those very treasures.
Instead of gold and silver,
he pointed to the poor and exclaimed,
“Here are the treasures of the Church.”
It wasn’t long before St. Lawrence was slowly roasted on a gridiron.
He even humored his executioners stating,
“You can turn me over now. I am done on one side.”
To his very last breath,
he prayed for his persecutors
and the conversion of the city Rome.
We can find strength in the witness of St. Lawrence
in the words of the psalmist,
“Blessed is the man whose heart is firm
trusting in the Lord.
His heart is steadfast he shall not fear.”
The wealth of the Church is indeed in her members
who turn to Christ in their poverty
to help them when the chips are down.
We have those days when something overwhelms us,
and we must step back for a moment or two and give it to the Lord.
Let us not fear but rather contemplate
the words of St. Paul in today’s first reading,
“God can make every grace abundant for you, so that in all things, always having all you need, you may have an abundance for every good work.”
Every day we can refocus our center on God
as the source of our life and well-being.
May he make every one of our hearts steadfast, unwavering in him.