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Thursday, March 29, 2001

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Exodus 32:7-14
Psalm 106:19-23
John 5:31-47

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how to grow in faith

"How can people like you believe?" —John 5:44

Lent will end in two weeks. Then the Triduum will culminate in hundreds of millions of Catholic Christians renewing their baptismal promises at every Mass in the world on Easter Vigil or Easter Sunday. At that climatic moment, will you make the greatest act of faith in your life and totally give yourself to the Lord?

To make this greatest act of faith, we need to grow in faith daily throughout Lent. First, the Lord will send people into our lives who are like lamps, "set aflame and burning bright" (Jn 5:35). Through these people, the Lord will strengthen our faith. Second, Jesus will do great works in our lives (Jn 5:36). These works are a greater testimony to the Lord, and they will deepen our faith. Next, God the Father, speaking in the quiet of our hearts, testifies to Jesus and can thereby strengthen our faith (Jn 5:37). Finally, Jesus commands us to "search the Scriptures" (Jn 5:39), for "faith comes through hearing, and hearing by the word of God" (Rm 10:17, our transl). If we do not believe what Moses wrote, that is, the beginning of the Scriptures, we will not believe Jesus (Jn 5:47). But if we search the Scriptures and let the Lord search our hearts through the Scriptures, we will have faith as never before.

This Lent, constantly increase in faith in the Lord.

Prayer:  Lord, "increase our faith" (Lk 17:5).

Promise:  "So the Lord relented in the punishment He had threatened to inflict on His people." —Ex 32:14

Praise:  Looking back, Andrew rejoiced to see his growth in faith  over the years, although he couldn't see it day by day (see Mk 4:27ff).

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, August 9, 2000

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 18, 2000