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Saturday, August 25, 2007

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St. Louis
St. Joseph Calasanz

Ruth 2:1-3, 8-11; 4:13-17
Psalm 128
Matthew 23:1-12

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redeeming qualities

"The field she entered to glean after the harvesters happened to be the section belonging to Boaz." —Ruth 2:3

Boaz was a redeemer. He redeemed Ruth from a present with only poverty and a future with only destitution and loneliness. "Boaz took Ruth" (Ru 4:13), entered into a contract to personally pay the price of her "redemption" (Ru 4:7), and brought her into "a future full of hope" (Jer 29:11). Finally, Boaz didn't simply redeem Ruth and then walk away from her. In redeeming Ruth, Boaz raised her to an intimate relationship with himself (Ru 4:13) and gave her a royal heritage (Ru 4:22; Mt 1:5).

Jesus is our Redeemer. He "sacrificed Himself for us, to redeem us from all unrighteousness and to cleanse for Himself a people of His own" (Ti 2:14). Like Boaz, Jesus personally paid the price to redeem us (1 Cor 6:20) and offers us an eternal future and royal heritage with Him (see 2 Pt 1:4). In redeeming us, He didn't walk away from us, but instead has raised us to offer us such a level of intimacy with Him that we might live in Him and He in us (Jn 6:56; 17:23).

Boaz the redeemer asked Ruth to stay with him (Ru 2:8). Ruth could have turned him down and headed elsewhere. But she abandoned herself into his care. Jesus our Redeemer likewise asks us to stay with Him (see Mt 26:38), and let Him be our Head (Eph 1:22). Be like Ruth. Stay with your Redeemer. Abandon your life into the hands of Jesus.

Prayer:  Jesus, "my Redeemer" (Ps 19:15), "my lips shall shout for joy as I sing Your praises; my soul also, which You have redeemed" (Ps 71:23).

Promise:  "Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled, but whoever humbles himself shall be exalted." —Mt 23:12

Praise:  St. Louis, himself a king, served the King of kings by his impartiality in ministering to the poor as well as the rich.

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, March 14, 2007

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