Posted by: fvbcdm | July 21, 2014

Feast of Saint Lawrence of Brindisi (21 July 2014)

In the gospel, Our Lord addresses his heavenly Father, saying to him, “You have hidden these things from the wise and the learned and you have revealed them to the childlike.” Most of us, I suspect, have had experience of this. We have known very erudite people— professors, businessmen, professionals in various fields—who knew their own craft or vocation very well but knew little or nothing about the things of God. This passage reminds me of a beautiful little prayer that I learned a long time ago, and I used to teach it to those high school students to whom I taught French. It is called the Breton fisherman’s prayer. The Bretons are the people who inhabit the peninsula jutting out into the Atlantic Ocean in northwestern France. For centuries, the people there have been fishermen and have had to brave the fury of the sea to make a living. Traditionally the Bretons have been a devout people, simple God-fearing people who recognized their need for divine help especially when at sea, since the Atlantic Ocean can be ferocious in winter. The prayer, naive and childlike as it is, says this: “Dear God, be good to me. The sea is so wide, and my boat is so small!” We might not go to sea regularly, especially in a small fishing boat, but we can certainly use this lovely little prayer to good advantage. Our life produces difficulties of various kinds; all of us have our crosses to carry. We can think of life as a wide and tempestuous sea, with ourselves in small boats at the mercy of wind and wave. And thus we too can say, “Dear God, be good to me. The sea is so wide, and my boat is so small!”  Thank you for seeking God’s truth. God bless you. Father Victor Brown, O.P.

Note:  This Message was composed some years ago.


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