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Thursday, February 17, 2005

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Founders of the Servites

Esther C:12, 14-16, 23-25
Psalm 138
Matthew 7:7-12

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"i can never be alone" (jn 16:32)

"Help me, who am alone and have no one but You, O Lord." —Esther C:25

Queen Esther was about to risk her life to plead before the king on behalf of her people, the Jews. Alone inside the palace, she had no one to turn to for support. In her anguish, she prayed fervently: "Help me, who am alone and have no help but You...Help me, who am alone and have no one but You, O Lord" (Est C:14, 25). Esther knew God was with her in her loneliness.

A few hours before Jesus was arrested, He told His disciples that they would completely abandon Him, "leaving Me quite alone" (Jn 16:32). Then He declared to them: "Yet I can never be alone; the Father is with Me" (Jn 16:32).

Paul was arrested for preaching the faith. He tells us: "At the first hearing of my case in court, no one took my part. In fact, everyone abandoned me...But the Lord stood by my side and gave me strength" (2 Tm 4:16, 17). Paul knew God was with Him.

God said: "It is not good for the man to be alone" (Gn 2:18). God's plan is for His disciples to operate in pairs (Lk 10:1) or in Christian community. However, there may come "a time" in our lives when we are not only "far from" the fellowship of others (Eccl 3:5), but we are totally without human support and consolation. In those times particularly, we must know beyond a doubt that Jesus is Emmanuel, God-with-us (Mt 1:23). We are never alone. Jesus assures us: "Know that I am with you always" (Mt 28:20).

Prayer:  Father, teach me to constantly rest in Your presence.

Promise:  "Ask, and you will receive. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and it will be opened to you." —Mt 7:7

Praise:  The Servites serve their Lady and their Lord by serving their brothers and sisters. Their seven founders lived lives of gospel poverty and shared Christian community.

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Giles H. Pater, August 18 8, 2004

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 23, 2004