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Saturday, February 5, 2011

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St. Agatha

Hebrews 13:15-17, 20-21
Psalm 23:1-6
Mark 6:30-34

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Through Jesus "let us continually offer God a sacrifice." —Hebrews 13:15

As Christians, we center our lives on Jesus' ultimate sacrifice on Calvary, by which atonement was made for all sins of all people of all time. In thankful response to Jesus' once-and-for-all sacrifice (see Heb 10:10), we live lives of sacrifice united to Him and His sacrifice on the cross. We offer our bodies to the Lord as "living sacrifices" (see Rm 12:1). Through Jesus, we offer a continual sacrifice of praise (Heb 13:15). Before we were conceived, the Lord prepared a sacrificial life of good deeds and generosity for us (see Eph 2:10). He "is pleased by sacrifices of that kind" (Heb 13:16). Moreover, we not only sacrifice our own lives to the Lord, but also the lives of others. For example, we preach the gospel so that those who believe in it "may be offered up as a pleasing sacrifice, consecrated by the Holy Spirit" (Rm 15:16).

Because we as Christians are "living sacrifices" living lives of sacrifice, we center our lives on the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. This makes present, perpetuates, and applies Jesus' sacrifice on Calvary. Through the Mass, our lives of sacrifice are united with Jesus and all other Christians throughout the world who are also living lives of sacrifice.

Therefore, celebrate Mass daily or as often as possible. Thank Jesus for Calvary. Be a "living sacrifice" (Rm 12:1).

Prayer:  Father, show me how Calvary, the Mass, and my life go together.

Promise:  "He pitied them, for they were like sheep without a shepherd; and He began to teach them at great length." —Mk 6:34

Praise:  St. Agatha became a living sacrifice by dying as a martyr from tortures rather than break her vow of virginity.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our leaflet, Celebrating Mass in the Power of the Spirit, or our tape on Every Mass Should be Spirit-filled on audio AV 49-1 or video V-49.)

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July27, 2010

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