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Friday, April 13, 2012

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Easter Friday

Acts 4:1-12
Psalm 118:1-2, 4, 22-27
John 21:1-14

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another "another chance"

"Simon Peter said to them, 'I am going out to fish.' 'We will join you,' they replied." —John 21:3

Jesus had called Simon Peter to quit fishing for fish and begin fishing for men and women (Mk 1:17). In other words, Jesus called Peter to follow Him and to evangelize. Peter did this for three years. However, after the risen Christ appeared to Peter three times (Lk 24:34; Jn 20:19, 26), Peter decided to forget Jesus' Resurrection, his three years with Jesus, and his calling by Jesus. Peter went back into the fishing business and led six other Christian leaders away from their calling as well (see Jn 21:2).

Jesus could have refused to give them another "another chance," but in His mercy He came to His "former" apostles, worked a miracle (Jn 21:6), and led them back into His kingdom. The risen Jesus continued to appear to them and gave them "another" outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost (see Jn 20:22; Acts 2:3ff). Peter and the apostles were confirmed in their faith. The fearful and easily-manipulated Peter even stood up in a very intimidating situation and proclaimed to the Jewish religious leaders that they needed to repent and accept that Jesus' name is the only "name in the whole world given to men by which we are to be saved" (Acts 4:12).

If you and/or those you know are fallen-away, backsliding, or apostatizing, there is hope. The Lord is rich in mercy (Eph 2:4). The Holy Spirit will confirm us and make us holy. God wants to raise us from the death of sin into risen life in Christ. Repent. Go to Confession. Come back home.

Prayer:  Father, may I go out of any business not in Your will for me.

Promise:  "If we must answer today for a good deed done to a cripple and explain how he was restored to health, then you and all the people of Israel must realize that it was done in the name of Jesus Christ the Nazorean Whom you crucified and Whom God raised from the dead." —Acts 4:9-10

Praise:  Praise You, risen Jesus! "The Stone Which the builders rejected has become the Cornerstone" (Ps 118:22). Alleluia!

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 31, 2011

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