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Tuesday, December 19, 2000

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Judges 13:2-7, 24-25
Psalm 71
Luke 1:5-25

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fruit for christmas

"His wife was barren and had borne no children." —Judges 13:2

Today the Church introduces us to the mother of Samson and to Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptizer. Both of these women were barren, but the Lord miraculously made them fruitful. Are you barren, not physically, but spiritually? How many people have you helped lead to Christ this Advent? How many spiritual children have you begotten in the last couple of years? (see Phlm 10; 1 Cor 4:15) With how many people have you tried to share your faith? How many seeds of the gospel have you planted?

Many of us have been barren. We need the miracle mentioned in today's readings. We need to be made fruitful. If we don't share our faith in Jesus, do we have faith in Jesus? If we don't let others know that Jesus loves them, do we love them? If we haven't given others the opportunity to know Christ, how can they have Christ-mas? For without Christ there is no Christ-mas. Jesus taught: "I am the Vine, you are the branches. He who lives in Me and I in him, will produce abundantly" (Jn 15:5). Be fruitful and multiply (Gn 1:28).

Prayer:  Father, may I give up my life to bear fruit abundantly (Jn 12:24).

Promise:  "In these days the Lord is acting on my behalf; He has seen fit to remove my reproach among men." —Lk 1:25

Praise:  "O Flower of Jesse's stem, come, let nothing keep You from coming to our aid."

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Edward J. Gratsch, July 15, 2000

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 17, 2000