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Monday, April 14, 2003

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Holy Week

Isaiah 42:1-7
Psalm 27
John 12:1-11

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the foolish "fanaticism" of faith

"Many Jews were going over to Jesus and believing in Him on account of Lazarus." —John 12:11

On the first day of the Easter season, the Lord through His Church will question us whether we believe in God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. If each of us says "I do" to these questions, we will be making the greatest decision a human being can make. By this act of faith, we will completely submit our intellect and will to God (Catechism [CCC], 143). "Faith is first of all a personal adherence of man to God" (CCC, 150).

If we renew our baptismal promises, we will be making an act of faith, as Mary of Bethany did. We will be throwing ourselves at Jesus' feet and pouring out our possessions and lives in worship of Him (see Jn 12:3). By our act of faith in the Lord, we will become fools for Christ (see 1 Cor 4:10). The Judases of the world will criticize us for our foolishness and "fanaticism" (see Jn 12:4ff). But Jesus will accept our act of faith, love, and worship.

Those truly in love do things so wise that they appear to be foolish. Jesus, our Wisdom (1 Cor 1:30) and our Love (1 Jn 4:8, 16), looked like a fool when He died on the cross for those who sinned against Him. This Easter, by faith follow the God-Fool, Jesus, through the cross to the glory of the resurrection.

Prayer:  Father, may I express my faith in You no matter what it costs or how foolish I look.

Promise:  "I believe that I shall see the bounty of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord with courage; be stouthearted, and wait for the Lord." —Ps 27:13-14

Praise:  Looking foolish to the eyes of the world, Joan left behind a fulfilling career as she and her husband were open to accept as many children from God as He willed.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape Hold Fast to the Faith on audio AV 71-1 or video V-71.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Giles H. Pater, October 17, 2002

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 21, 2002