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Sunday, April 26, 1998

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3rd Sunday of Easter

Acts 5:27-32, 40-41
Revelation 5:11-14
Psalm 30
John 21:1-19

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"The apostles for their part left the Sanhedrin full of joy that they had been judged worthy of ill-treatment for the sake of the Name." —Acts 5:41

Peter went back into the fishing business and quit following Jesus (Jn 21:3). He probably did this because of his long-standing problems with Jesus' command to take up the cross. When Jesus had first mentioned the cross to His disciples, Peter had downplayed the whole thing. Then "Jesus turned on Peter and said, 'Get out of My sight, you satan!' " (Mt 16:23) Peter had made plans to stay on the mountain of the Transfiguration rather than go into the valley of suffering and death on the cross (see Mt 17:4). When Jesus was about to die on the cross, Peter had denied Him three times. Therefore, it's reasonable to surmise that Peter went back into the fishing business to escape the cross.

The risen Jesus then intervened. He caught Peter's attention by telling the disciples how to catch 153 fish at one time (Jn 21:11). Later, after repeatedly asking Peter if he loved Him, Jesus "indicated the sort of death by which Peter was to glorify God" (Jn 21:19). Jesus began to show Peter that he would not only carry a cross but die on one. The Holy Spirit eventually guided Peter to the full truth (Jn 16:13) about his own death on the cross. Finally, Peter imitated Jesus to the point that he too died on a cross.

The risen Jesus is quietly running after you with a cross to give you. If you're running from the cross, you're running from the risen Christ. Let Him catch you. Be the fish Jesus catches.

Prayer:  Father, may I come to the point that I will boast of nothing but the cross (Gal 6:14).

Promise:  "We testify to this. So too does the Holy Spirit, Whom God has given to those that obey Him." —Acts 5:32

Praise:  "To the One seated on the throne, and to the Lamb, be praise and honor, glory and might, forever and ever!" (Rv 5:13)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, July 26, 1997

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 29, 1997