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Thursday, May 23, 1996

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Pentecost Novena - Day 7

Acts 22:30; 23:6-11
Psalm 16
John 17:20-26

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two united states

"I pray also for those who will believe in Me through their word, that all may be one." — John 17:20-21

Many of you reading this are citizens of the United States. By "united," we do not mean that most people agree with each other or with the government. Moreover, "United" does not mean that we love or serve each other. "United" means that all the states accept a certain national political system.

However, by Jesus' standards, "United" means that we are graced to be one as Jesus and the Father are one (Jn 17:21-22). "United" means living in Jesus and He in us (Jn 17:23). "United" means being temples of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 6:19) and having the Triune God live within us. "United" means being members of the body of Christ and being baptized into His body, the Church (1 Cor 12:12-13).

Are you "united" like the United States, or are you united like the Holy Trinity? Of course, it is impossible for us to have Trinity-unity by our human powers, but the Holy Spirit will give us this divine unity, as He did at the first Pentecost (Acts 2:7-11; Eph 4:3; 1 Cor 12:13).

Receive the Holy Spirit; receive a divine, Trinity-unity with God, spouse, family, brothers and sisters in Christ, and even enemies. Then the world will believe (Jn 17:21).

Prayer:  Father, may I even be willing to die for unity (see Jn 11:51-52).

Promise:  "That night the Lord appeared at Paul's side and said: 'Keep up your courage!' " — Acts 23:11

Praise:  Margaret and Steven always resolve their disagreements before they go to sleep (see Eph 4:26-27).

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Edward J. Gratsch, October 10, 1995

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 13, 1995