Reading through the Pope's letter for this Day I was especially struck by one very short sentence in the first paragraph: Love has no alibi. And of course it's true. Love does not - simply cannot - say Not yet... or I'll start loving when the conditions are right and favourable... or Of course, when she loves me and is nice to me, then I'll love her back... Love simply loves, with no half-measures, no alibi, no diversionary or delaying tactic, no expectation of reward.
And in this Philippine can lead us by example: she who, as a young woman ministering to the sick and dying poor of Grenoble, told her over-concerned relatives to Let me alone; it is my happiness and glory to serve my divine Saviour in the person of the unfortunate and the poor. For Philippine love most surely had no alibi, or any conditions or restraint. May she, today and every day, help us to serve the poor with a great-hearted love which has no alibis, and which shows itself in deeds and not just words.