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Monday, April 29, 1996

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St. Catherine of Siena

Acts 11:1-18
Psalm 42
John 10:11-18

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pass interference

"If God was giving them the same gift He gave us when we first believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I to interfere with Him?" —Acts 11:17

The Lord is always actively showing His love for us in His wondrous plan of salvation. We would like to think we are participating in and promoting His works, but it's possible that we are interfering with them. For instance, Peter thought he would have been interfering with the Lord if he hadn't baptized the Gentile Cornelius and his household. Gamaliel, a highly regarded Pharisee, warned the Sanhedrin to have nothing to do with Jesus' apostles because, if the early Church was from God and they persecuted it, the Sanhedrin could find themselves fighting God (Acts 5:38-39). Paul taught: "When you sin thus against your brothers and wound their weak consciences, you are sinning against Christ. Therefore, if food causes my brother to sin I will never eat meat again, so that I may not be an occasion of sin to him" (1 Cor 8:12- 13). If we are occasions of sin to others, we interfere with their coming to Christ. Jesus strongly commanded a leper He had healed not to tell anyone but the priest about the healing. However, "the man went off and began to proclaim the whole matter freely, making the story public. As a result of this, it was no longer possible for Jesus to enter a town openly" (Mk 1:45).

When we sin, we interfere with God. In our selfishness and apathy, we interfere with God. The Lord is in the process of giving salvation to each person in the world. He is stopping abortion, starvation, and racism. He is setting the captives free, healing the sick, and restoring marriages and families. Please don't interfere.

Prayer:  Father, may I interfere with the devil and not with You.

Promise:  Jesus said: "I am the Good Shepherd. I know My sheep and My sheep know Me." — Jn 10:14

Praise:  Catherine prayed unceasingly for the unity of the Church. God responded by inspiring her to write the pope, cardinals, and bishops, admonishing them to reform and unite the Church. God did bring about unity in the Church through Catherine's efforts.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Edward J. Gratsch, October 10, 1995

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 13, 1995