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Saturday, July 11, 1998

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St. Benedict

Isaiah 6:1-8
Psalm 93
Matthew 10:24-33

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authentic christians

"Whoever acknowledges Me before men I will acknowledge before My Father in heaven." —Matthew 10:32

Jesus' disciples are slandered (see Mt 10:25) and persecuted (2 Tm 3:12). Nonetheless, they remain fearless (see Mt 10:26, 28, 31), bold, and free witnesses, acknowledging and proclaiming Jesus, even before the most hostile of men (Mt 10:32). Jesus' disciples are not intimidated and manipulated. In their personal weakness, God's power in them reaches perfection (2 Cor 12:9). They even rejoice that they are judged worthy of ill-treatment for the sake of Jesus' name (Acts 5:41).

The fearless freedom and joyful boldness of Jesus' disciples shocks the world. The worldly find it hard to believe that Christians are really what they seem to be. Some people in this world even ask Christians the reason for their hope, joy, and freedom (1 Pt 3:15). Although the world baits, tests, and fears authentic Christians, it holds them in great esteem (Acts 5:13), while despising phony, lukewarm Christians.

May we all be authentic Christians, a people to be reckoned with and worthy of being persecuted for love of Jesus.

Prayer:  Father, may zeal for Your house consume me (Jn 2:17).

Promise:  " 'Here I am,' I said; 'send me!' " —Is 6:8

Praise:  Young Benedict rebelled against the perversions of the culture of his time by moving into the woods and leading a life of prayer and penance. So many people were attracted to Benedict's life of holiness that he needed to build a number of monasteries to house them.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, November 29, 1997

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 2, 1997