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Wednesday, July 9, 2014

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St. Augustine Zhao Rong
& Companions

Hosea 10:1-3, 7-8, 12
Psalm 105:2-7
Matthew 10:1-7

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feeder system

"The reign of God is at hand!" —Matthew 10:7

In today's Gospel, Jesus chose twelve new men, His apostles (Mt 10:2-4). He commissioned them, and us, to be new Josephs, to be absorbed in distributing the Word of the Lord in times of famine and in times of plenty. The children of the New Covenant are to be distributors of food like the Old Testament patriarch Joseph, who fed the whole world (see Gn 42:6).

From this point on in Matthew's Gospel, Jesus will be teaching and feeding His apostles. After building them up, He will send them out to feed His people with His Word (Jn 21:15-17). The apostles then feed others, who in turn grow strong enough to feed still others. God intends that this feeder system perpetuate itself so His Word continues to spread (see Acts 6:7).

We are to be the Master's good stewards, occupied with distributing physical and spiritual food (Mt 24:45). Like the apostles, we have been fed by the Master on a steady diet of Word and Eucharist. Thus built up, we are able to feed His sheep (Jn 21:17) and keep them alive and thriving in times of famine (Ps 33:19).

Amos prophesied that there would be a famine not for food, but for hearing the Word of the Lord (Am 8:11). Therefore, distribute God's Word, teaching in-season and out-of-season (2 Tm 4:2).

Prayer:  "May Your kindness, O Lord, be upon us who have put our hope in You" (Ps 33:22).

Promise:  "Break up for yourselves a new field, for it is time to seek the Lord." —Hos 10:12

Praise:  The 120 Chinese Martyrs, who included men, women, and children, priests, religious, and lay people, showed the depth of their faith by giving everything, including their lives, to Jesus.

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

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, January 2, 2014

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