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Thursday, November 9, 2000

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Dedication of St. John Lateran

Ezekiel 47:1-2, 8-12
1 Corinthians 3:9-13, 16-17
Psalm 46
John 2:13-22

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"rebuild my church"

"His disciples recalled the words of Scripture: 'Zeal for Your house consumes Me.' " —John 2:17

I, a priest and a pastor, have been trying for years to get people to go to church and to support the church. I and others like me have not been very successful, for most people don't go to church even on Sundays and don't tithe and give alms.

However, the Lord calls us to do much more than the little we are trying unsuccessfully to do. He calls us to love the Church as Jesus does. We should lay down our lives for the Church (Eph 5:25) and be consumed with zeal for the building of the Church (Jn 2:17; Ps 69:10). But when we are failing to do the minimum, how can we succeed in doing the maximum?

For its first three-hundred years of existence, the Church was made up of small, home-based communities. We need to restore the historical foundation of the Church. We need to rebuild the Church from the bottom up. In daily laying down our lives for the brothers and sisters in our small communities, we will love them and the Church, and be set on fire with zeal to build the Church. Then going to church and supporting the church will not be unrealized ideals but only the beginning in loving Jesus and His body and bride, the Church.

Prayer:  Father, teach me to love the universal Church by loving those in my home and everyday life.

Promise:  "Everyone, however, must be careful how he builds. No one can lay a foundation other than the one that has been laid, namely Jesus Christ." —1 Cor 3:10-11

Praise:  St. John the Baptizer "heralded the coming of Jesus by proclaiming a baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel" (Acts 13:24).

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, April 24, 2000

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 27, 2000