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Friday, September 19, 2008

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St. Januarius

1 Corinthians 15:12-20
Psalm 17
Luke 8:1-3

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risen life

"Christ is now raised from the dead." —1 Corinthians 15:20

Christians are a resurrection-people. "If Christ has not been raised, our preaching is void of content and your faith is empty too. Indeed, we should then be exposed as false witnesses of God" (1 Cor 15:14-15). "If Christ was not raised, your faith is worthless. You are still in your sins, and those who have fallen asleep in Christ are the deadest of the dead. If our hopes in Christ are limited to this life only, we are the most pitiable of men" (1 Cor 15:17-19). In summary, without Jesus' resurrection, our faith is meaningless, empty, false, and worthless.

Without the resurrection, we are trapped in sin, doomed in death, and "the most pitiable of men" and women. Because Jesus is risen, our faith is the ultimate, full, true, and precious meaning of life. Because of the resurrection, Jesus has conquered sin, death, Satan, hell, and damnation. We are therefore the most blessed of men and women.

Because Jesus' resurrection makes all the difference in this world and in the next, we celebrate His resurrection not annually but each Sunday. We focus the whole day on the risen Christ. We assemble and pray with other risen people. We celebrate with the assembly and with our families. Each week we take off work for this day. We draw our "life from the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead" (1 Pt 1:3).

Prayer:  Father, may I obey the Third Commandment.

Promise:  "The Twelve accompanied Him, and also some women who had been cured of evil spirits and maladies." —Lk 8:1-2

Praise:  None of the wild animals placed in the amphitheater with St. Januarius and his companions to devour them would come near them (see Dn 6:23).

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape Meeting the Risen Christ on audio AV 4A-1 or video V-4A.)

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 25, 2008

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