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Monday, April 29, 2013

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St. Catherine of Siena

Acts 14:5-18
Psalm 115:1-4, 15-16
John 14:21-26

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"There was a man who was lame from birth; he used to sit crippled, never having walked in his life." —Acts 14:8

From the multitude of signs and wonders worked by the Holy Spirit in the early Church, the healing of the man lame from birth was selected as the first miracle recounted after the first Christian Pentecost (see Acts 3:6ff). Of the miracles done by the Spirit through Philip in a Samaritan town, the Bible emphasizes: "Many others were paralytics or cripples, and these were cured" (Acts 8:7). Not only did Peter, John, and Philip heal the lame, but also Paul commanded a man lame from birth: " 'Stand up! On your feet!' The man jumped up and began to walk around" (Acts 14:10). It seems that healing the lame was part of the credentials for Christian leaders (see 2 Cor 12:12).

The fact that healing the lame receives such emphasis in Acts of the Apostles may be an indication that this healing is not only an individual event, but a miracle representing initiation into the whole Christian life. Because of our fallen nature, we all are spiritually lame from the time of our conception and birth. We must receive a new nature to be freed from this spiritual lameness so we can walk as disciples in the footsteps of our Master, Jesus (see 1 Pt 2:21). Authentic Christian leaders will be used by the Lord to free us to "walk in light, as [Jesus] is in the light" (1 Jn 1:7).

Are you walking with Jesus or are you lame? Have you raised up others to walk with Jesus? Are you an authentic disciple of Jesus, making disciples for Jesus?

Prayer:  Father, show me where I am lame. By Your grace, may I jump up and begin to walk around. May I lead others to do the same.

Promise:  "Anyone who loves Me will be true to My word, and My Father will love him; We will come to him and make Our dwelling place with him." —Jn 14:23

Praise:  By the age of twenty-seven, St. Catherine had converted thousands by her words and her actions.

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, November 2, 2012

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