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Monday, July 31, 2017

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St. Ignatius of Loyola

Exodus 32:15-24, 30-34
Psalm 106:19-23
Matthew 13:31-35

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leading men

"What did this people ever do to you that you should lead them into so grave a sin?" —Exodus 32:21

Aaron's leadership style was to satisfy the people. When the people approached him with a problem, Aaron didn't consider God's wishes. Instead, he tried to satisfy the people's desires. Not succeeding, he simply "let the people run wild" (Ex 32:25). Under Aaron's weak "leadership," sinfulness, chaos, and confusion reigned instead of godly order (see 1 Cor 14:33, 40).

Diotrephes, an early Christian leader, "enjoyed" being a Church leader (see 3 Jn 9). He loved to dominate (3 Jn 9, RNAB). His leadership style apparently consisted in trying to satisfy himself (see 3 Jn 9, RSV-CE). Diotrephes is not presented in Scripture as seeking to determine God's wishes. Instead, he arbitrarily refused to acknowledge Church authority established by God and expelled those who wished to submit to it (3 Jn 10).

Moses was a true servant-leader (see Lk 22:26). He exercised his God-given authority as needed (Ex 32:26), but typically was meek (Nm 12:3) as he listened to his people's needs (e.g. Ex 18:13). His leadership style was to satisfy God and sacrificially love his people. He constantly sought God's direction as he submitted his leadership to God (Ex 34:34). He interceded on behalf of his beloved people, even if he might have to suffer because of it (see Ex 32:10-14, 32).

Is God calling you to be a leader? Seek God's wishes. Answer His call. "With a leader to break the path they shall burst open the gate and go out through it" (Mi 2:13).

Prayer:  Father, may we obey the leaders You give us and defer to them so they may rejoice in serving You (Heb 13:17).

Promise:  "I will announce what has lain hidden since the creation of the world." —Mt 13:35

Praise:  St. Ignatius, a wounded soldier, converted to faith in Jesus while reading the lives of the saints during his convalescence.

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

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 22, 2017

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