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Friday, September 1, 2000

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1 Corinthians 1:17-25
Psalm 33
Matthew 25:1-13

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"It pleased God to save those who believe through the foolishness of the preaching of the gospel." —1 Corinthians 1:21, our transl.

Jesus has saved us through the foolishness of the message of the cross. This salvation applies to every aspect of our lives. Through the supposed foolishness of the cross, we can be saved from marital breakdown, financial insecurity, manipulation by fears, loss of purpose in life, anxieties, despair, self-hatred, enslaving addictions, bitterness, unforgiveness, and all other evils. We are saved always by the foolishness of the cross.

Thus, we can pray with St. Francis of Assisi: "We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You because by Your holy cross You have redeemed the world." When we are redeemed from addictions, it is by the cross. When a marriage is a glorious sign of Christ's love for the Church (see Eph 5:32), we should boast of nothing but the cross (Gal 6:14). When we forgive and love our enemies and ourselves, we should "speak of nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified" (1 Cor 2:2).

The cross is the only tree of life. It is a scandal to the Jews and foolishness to the Gentiles, but to those called by God, the cross is "the power of God and the wisdom of God" (1 Cor 1:24). Take up the cross daily (Lk 9:23).

Prayer:  Father, when I make the Sign of the Cross, may it express the meaning of my life.

Promise:  "The ones who were ready went in to the wedding with him." —Mt 25:10

Praise:  Stricken by a crippling form of arthritis at a young age, Dorothy looks for ways to serve God in her semi-invalid state.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Edward J. Gratsch, March 8, 2000

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, March 9, 2000