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Wednesday, August 16, 2023

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St. Stephen of Hungary

Deuteronomy 34:1-12
Psalm 66:1-3, 5, 8, 16-17
Matthew 18:15-20

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“If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault.” —Matthew 18:15, RSV-CE

Baptized Christians are our brothers and sisters, whether or not we realize this. If they commit a sin against us, we must forgive and correct them, “but keep it between the two” of us (Mt 18:15). Lamentably, although this first step in reconciliation works often, it is frequently not attempted.

Notice this command applies to brothers and sisters in Christ, not to unbaptized people. We must forgive, pray for (1 Jn 5:16), and evangelize the unbaptized, but we may not always be called to correct them. Furthermore, we are to correct our brothers and sisters when they sin, not when we feel hurt because we have judged their motives or taken offense. We should “overlook faults” (Sir 28:7; Prv 19:11), weaknesses, and shortcomings but forgive sins.

Finally, we must never mention (even to our spouses) that a brother or sister has sinned against us. If we have sinned by gossiping, we must repent. If we obey Matthew 18:15, wars will be prevented, marriages reconciled, families restored, and peace established. Obeying this one verse will change the world. Do Matthew 18:15.

Prayer:  Father, by Your grace I will be a minister of reconciliation (2 Cor 5:18).

Promise:  “Since then no prophet has arisen in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face. He had no equal in all the signs and wonders the Lord sent him to perform.” —Dt 34:10-11

Praise:  St. Stephen and his son, St. Emeric, are both canonized saints.

Reference:  (For a related teaching on Biblical Counseling, listen to, download or order our CD 13A-1, CD 13A-3 and CD 13 B-1 or our DVD 13A and DVD 13B on our website.)

Rescript:  In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant the Nihil Obstat for One Bread, One Body covering the period August 1, 2023 through September 30, 2023. Reverend Steve J. Angi, Vicar General, Archdiocese of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio January 4, 2023

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.