Over the next couple days we’ll hear a series woes from Jesus that are directed towards the hypocrisy of the Scribes & Pharisees. This is really a major theme in scripture. In the Old Testament God tells his people to “rend their hearts, not their garments.” However, Scripture is filled with people that rend their garments and not their hearts. In the Book of Jeremiah the Lord tells Jeremiah that “Both prophet and priest are godless. In my very house (or temple) I find their wickedness.” People like this are far from God. Their acts of piety are really just for show; they’re outward acts that make them appear holy, but as our Lord so often says in scripture their hearts are far from him.
St. Rose of Lima is different. She’s someone who lived with conviction in her love for God. She was born in Lima, Peru and at young age took a vow of virginity. Like so many parents with daughters during her time Rose’s parents wanted her to marry, but Rose refused. She wanted to join a convent, but her parents told her no. So out of obedience to them she lived a life similar to Catherina of Siena; a life of penance & prayer at her family house and she assisted them with work where she could. Also like Catherine of Siena she became a third order Dominican.
In the quasi-monastic life she was living, Rose rendered her heart to God and the fruits of this had lasting effects. Her charity, one time even opening a room in the house where she cared for homeless children, elderly & sick, was the start of social services in Peru. And then many people throughout the years since her death have turned to her for her intercession.
We turn to St. Rose today and ask that she’ll help us to rend out hearts to the Lord as she did, so that we don’t remain on surface level in our spiritual lives, but are converted and leave fruit that will last. - Fr Joseph Hastings St Faustina Shrine