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Tuesday, June 6, 2000

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Pentecost Novena — Day 5
St. Norbert

Acts 20:17-27
Psalm 68:10-11, 20-21
John 17:1-11

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finish lines

"If only I can finish..." —Acts 20:24

Today we are half-way through the Pentecost Novena in the year of the Great Jubilee. Some began the novena enthusiastically but now are barely praying even a little. Others had trouble getting started, and now feel it's too late. Others have fallen into sin and feel discouraged. The Lord is giving strength to those struggling, hope to those who are late, and mercy for those repentant.

Pray with Paul: "I put no value on my life if only I can finish my race and complete the service to which I have been assigned by the Lord Jesus" (Acts 20:24). By His grace, you will be able to say the words of Jesus to the Father: "I have given You glory on earth by finishing the work You gave Me to do" (Jn 17:4). Finish this Pentecost Novena. Let this year of the Great Jubilee be everything God wants it to be. "Fulfill your ministry" (2 Tm 4:5). "Lay aside every encumbrance of sin which clings" to you and "persevere in running the race which lies ahead" (Heb 12:1). Fight the good fight; finish the race; keep the faith (2 Tm 4:7). "Whoever holds out till the end will escape death" (Mt 10:22). "Give no thought to what lies behind but push on to what is ahead" (Phil 3:13). Fix your "entire attention" on "the finish line" and "run toward the prize" — "life on high in Christ Jesus" (Phil 3:14). When you die, may you be able to say with Jesus: "It is finished" (Jn 19:30).

Prayer:  Father, may I never stop loving You.

Promise:  "Eternal life is this: to know You, the only true God, and Him Whom You have sent, Jesus Christ." —Jn 17:3

Praise:  St. Norbert's conversion led him to sell his estates, give away the proceeds, and become an itinerant preacher.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, December 16, 1999

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 18, 1999