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Monday, December 14, 1998

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St. John of the Cross

Numbers 24:2-7, 15-17
Psalm 25
Matthew 21:23-27

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report to the authorities

"On what authority are You doing these things?" —Matthew 21:23

Jesus proclaimed shortly before His Ascension into heaven: "Full authority has been given to Me both in heaven and on earth; go, therefore, and make disciples of all the nations" (Mt 28:18-19). Jesus has full authority, and He has authorized us to make disciples of all nations. As we profess our faith in Him, we have the authority to drive out demons in His name (Mk 16:17). Moreover, as members of Jesus' body, the Church, we have "authority to expel unclean spirits and to cure sickness and disease of every kind" (Mt 10:1).

Are we fully using our God-given, life-changing, and world-changing authority in Jesus' name? We live in a culture of death infested with demons. Are we using our authority? We are surrounded by the sick and suffering. Are any of these people suffering unnecessarily? Four billion people have little chance for Christmas, for they don't know Christ. We have the authority and therefore the privilege and responsibility to make ourselves the slaves "of all so as to win over as many as possible" to Jesus (1 Cor 9:19).

If police officers did not use their authority to stop your house from being burglarized or to protect your child, you would be justifiably upset. Because our authority is greater than that of any police officer, we do a more serious injustice if we don't use that authority fully. Be under Jesus' authority. In His name, love, heal, free, and evangelize.

Prayer:  Father, may I be myself and act like a royal priest (1 Pt 2:9).

Promise:  "A Star shall advance from Jacob, and a Staff shall rise from Israel." —Nm 24:17

Praise:  St. John and St. Teresa of Avila worked together for years to build up the Carmelite order. Both saints are Doctors of the Church.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert J. Buschmiller, June 11, 1998

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 20, 1998