heaven, help us!
"Elijah appeared to them along with Moses; the two were in conversation with Jesus." —Mark 9:4
We Catholics and many other Christians believe that those who have died after living for the Lord continue to minister to us. For example, Moses and Elijah conversed with Jesus at the Transfiguration (Mk 9:4). The Lord revealed to Judas Maccabeus that the deceased high priest, Onias, and the prophet, Jeremiah, were praying in heaven for the Jewish army to have victory in war (2 Mc 15:12-16). After Jesus died on the cross, "many bodies of saints who had fallen asleep were raised. After Jesus' resurrection they came forth from their tombs and entered the holy city and appeared to many" (Mt 27:53). The Lord revealed to John that the spirits of the martyrs would come to life again to reign with Christ for a thousand years (Rv 20:4; see also Mt 19:28; Wis 3:1, 8). We believe the Bible indicates that this reign of the saints, including the heavenly ones, is taking place now.
"Therefore, since we for our part are surrounded by this cloud of witnesses" (Heb 12:1), let us ask our heavenly brothers and sisters in Christ's body to pray for us and help us. The Lord was delighted to work through them while they lived on earth. Now that they have shared in Christ's resurrection, they are in an even better position to serve their brothers and sisters.
Mary and all the saints, pray for us and help us live and die for Jesus.
Prayer: Father, may I apply every aspect of Your plan of salvation to my life.
Promise: "A cloud came, overshadowing them, and out of the cloud a voice: 'This is My Son, My Beloved. Listen to Him.' " —Mk 9:7
Praise: By praying the liturgy of the hours daily Mark connects with the miraculous work of the communion of saints.
Reference: (For a related teaching, order our tape Daily Prayers on audio AV 62-3 or video V-62.)
Rescript: †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 23, 2007
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