< <  

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

  > >

St. Joseph the Worker

Acts 5:17-26
Psalm 34:2-9
John 3:16-21

View Readings
Similar Reflections

"set free in the open" (see ps 18:20)

"Go out now and take your place in the temple precincts and preach to the people all about this new life." —Acts 5:20

The apostles were in prison, and then the angel of the Lord miraculously set them free (Acts 5:19). In addition to being set free of the physical chains that had bound them in jail, the apostles were also free of the chains of fear which had formerly kept them hidden in the upper room before receiving the Holy Spirit at Pentecost (see Jn 20:19; cf Acts 2:4). It would have been understandable if the apostles had fled from Jerusalem out of self-preservation and a desire to avoid further persecution. However, the apostles obediently and courageously "took their place" in public and resumed their preaching and teaching about new life in Jesus and the life in the Spirit (see Acts 5:20-21).

The Lord set the apostles free in the open (2 Sm 22:20; Ps 18:20). They were "a pillar of iron, a wall of brass against" their opponents (Jer 1:18). In Jesus, we need not fear our enemies nor live in chains of fear. The Lord promises: "It shall not be you who turn to them, but they shall turn to you" for consolation (see Jer 15:19). In the freedom of the Spirit, we can walk in the light, in the joy of the Lord Who is our Strength (Neh 8:10). In Jesus, we can overcome the world (Jn 16:33).

"The light [of Christ] shines on in the darkness, a darkness that did not overcome it" (Jn 1:5). Eleven days ago, at the Easter Vigil, we began the liturgy in darkness. We received the light of Christ from the Easter candle, and soon the dark Church was illuminated with light. "Let your light shine" (see Mt 5:16). Do not live in fear. In Jesus, you are the light of the world (Mt 5:14).

Prayer:  Father, consume me. May I be constantly on fire for Jesus.

Promise:  "Yes, God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him may not die but may have eternal life." —Jn 3:16

Praise:  St. Joseph taught Jesus how to work with wood. Jesus then worked the salvation of the world on a wooden cross.

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, November 28, 2018

The Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Nihil Obstat agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.