ST. JOHN OF SHANGHAI
“All things have been delivered to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and any one to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am meek and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is good, and my burden is light.” (Mt 11: 27-30)
Today, on the day of the repose of St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco (+1966), I’m thinking about the light and lightness of the cross-carrying Way. It so often emanated from this holy bishop, as those who knew him testify. And gratefully for those of us who did not know him, it is captured on some photos of him. He so completely gave himself up to his vocation, to follow Christ in meekness and humility, and to serve God and others, that even his smile was and continues to be a small self-offering that brings a bit of light into our day. It is a small “sacrifice” (from the Latin words “sacer” and “facere,” meaning “to make holy”), which makes our day a bit more holy.
Today let me be reminded of Christ’s meekness and humility, which oftentimes means “losing,” while others “win.” It means not asking why or how God or someone else didn’t do this or that for me, but asking how I can serve, if even simply by taking a back seat. Or just by smiling. This morning let me offer God a smile, by saying Thank You, so that by His grace I can move forward in peaceful usefulness to myself and others. Святителю отче Иоанне, моли Бога о нас! Holy Father John, pray to God for us!