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Tuesday, February 3, 1998

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St. Blase
St. Ansgar

2 Samuel 18:9-10, 14, 24-25, 30—19:3
Psalm 86
Mark 5:21-43

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"<u>only</u> believe"

"Do not fear; only believe." —Mark 5:36, our translation

We believe in Jesus, but we may have a lack of faith (Mk 9:24). Faith and doubt co-exist in us. We believe, but we may also give in to fear. Likewise, faith and fear may co-exist in us.

Jesus wants us to put out fear, doubt, unforgiveness, etc. from the room of our hearts, as He put the mourners out from the room where Jairus' dead daughter lay (see Mk 5:40). When we put everything out but faith, we are obeying Jesus' double commands: "Do not fear; only believe" (Mk 5:36, our transl).

When we are single-hearted (see Mt 5:8) instead of mixed-up, we are no longer being pushed around by the crowd of fear, doubt, and confusion (see Mk 5:24). When we have "only faith," we are not in the room of death; rather, we are in the room of resurrection. We need purified and pure faith.

"All depends on faith, everything is grace" (Rm 4:16). "Do not fear; only believe" (Mk 5:36, our transl).

Prayer:  Father, as I receive the St. Blase blessing today, give me pure, uncontaminated faith in You.

Promise:  "At this the family's astonishment knew no bounds." —Mk 5:42

Praise:  Ansgar evangelized Scandinavia and even converted the King of Sweden to faith in Jesus.

Reference:  (Lent is approaching. To help prepare for Lent, order our book, Scriptural Stations of the Cross, and our leaflets, A Prophetic Lent, and Lent and the Renewal of Our Baptismal Promises.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, July 26, 1997

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 29, 1997