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Saturday, April 3, 2004

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Ezekiel 37:21-28
Jeremiah 31:10-13
John 11:45-57

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holy peace

"I will make with them a covenant of peace; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them." —Ezekiel 37:26

To the Jewish nation which had been destroyed in war and whose leaders were in exile, the Lord promised an everlasting covenant of peace. This promise was ultimately fulfilled in Jesus, "Who is our Peace" (Eph 2:14), and Who left us the gift of peace in His last will and testament (Jn 14:27). Moreover, Jesus, "the God of peace" (Rm 16:20; 1 Thes 5:23; Heb 13:20), made His disciples peacemakers (Mt 5:9).

We receive Jesus' gift of peace and make peace by:

  • "the blood of His cross" (Col 1:20). We live in peace by following Jesus' example of suffering and dying for our enemies rather than by killing them,
  • forgiving and loving our enemies (Mt 5:44) and not retaliating for the things they do against us (Mt 5:39),
  • providing for the needs of our enemies and thereby conquering evil with good (Rm 12:20-21), and
  • being ministers of reconciliation (2 Cor 5:18). We invite others to forgive and love their enemies.

To receive and make peace is obviously impossible humanly speaking. We need a miracle. We need Easter. Receive the miracle of Easter peace by putting your heart and soul into Holy Week. The Lord has planned "immeasurably more than we ask or imagine" (Eph 3:20). Receive "God's own peace, which is beyond all understanding" (Phil 4:7).

Prayer:  Father, make this Holy Week one of the most important weeks of my life.

Promise:  "This caused many of the Jews who had come to visit Mary, and had seen what Jesus did, to put their faith in Him." —Jn 11:45

Praise:  Peter allowed Jesus, the Prince of Peace (Is 9:5), to cultivate peacefulness within him. Then he made peace with his brother.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, October 9, 2003

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 14, 2003