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Thursday, July 9, 2009

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St. Augustine Zhao Rong
& the Chinese Martyrs

Genesis 44:18-21, 23-29; 45:1-5
Psalm 105:16-21
Matthew 10:7-15

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our father

"Have you a father?" —Genesis 44:19

Joseph had everything. He was talented, handsome, and rich. He was one of the most important people in the world. However, all this meant almost nothing to him. Joseph was heartbroken, not so much because of being rejected by his brothers, but from being separated for twenty-five years from his father. Joseph expressed his longing for his father with loud sobs (Gn 45:2). As soon as Joseph revealed his identity to his brothers, he first of all asked them: "Is my father still in good health?" (Gn 45:3)

We all were conceived with Joseph's problem. We were separated from our heavenly Father. No matter what we had, bought, possessed, or did, we could never be happy. Everything was ruined and life was empty without our Father. Then Jesus saved us. He is the only way to the Father (Jn 14:6) and "the exact Representation of the Father's being" (Heb 1:3). If we see Jesus, we see the Father (Jn 14:9). Jesus and the Father are One (Jn 10:30). Jesus taught us to pray to "our Father" (Mt 6:9) and reconciled us to our Father. As the Father loves Jesus, Jesus loves us (Jn 15:9).

Prayer:  Abba...

Promise:  "The gift you have received, give as a gift." —Mt 10:8

Praise:  St. Augustine Zhao Rong could have had a longer, seemingly more prosperous life, but chose to die for his faith in Jesus, to live forever with his Father.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape, Lord, Teach Us to Pray, on audio AV 57-3 or video V-57.)

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, January 5, 2009

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