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Saturday, July 21, 2001

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St. Lawrence of Brindisi

Exodus 12:37-42
Psalm 136
Matthew 12:14-21

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christ, the silent killer

"He will proclaim justice to the Gentiles. He will not contend or cry out, nor will His voice be heard in the streets. The bruised reed He will not crush; the smoldering wick He will not quench." —Matthew 12:18-20

While the "powers that be" were plotting to destroy Jesus (Mt 12:14), He was quietly healing all of the many people following Him (Mt 12:15). "He sternly ordered them not to make public what He had done" (Mt 12:16). Jesus was not trying to gain the power that comes from popularity. He was not positioning Himself to spar with His opponents. Jesus did "not contend or cry out" (Mt 12:19). Nevertheless, judgment was "made victorious" (Mt 12:20) in Jesus and all nations "find hope" in Him (Mt 12:21).

Jesus is the silent killer of cultures which oppose Him. While cultures plot great schemes to destroy Jesus' kingdom and Church, Jesus silently changes the world — one heart at a time. For example, Jesus and the early Church eventually brought down the mighty Roman Empire. This was only the beginning, as culture after culture crumbled while Jesus and His Church stand. The Soviet Communists knew Jesus was the silent culture killer. So they banned Christianity and persecuted Christians. But the Soviet Union is dismantled. The Chinese Communists are the most populous anti-Christian culture in history. They are trying to control Christ and Christians, but Christ is at this moment silently bringing about the demise of Chinese Communism. Obey Jesus. "Do whatever He tells you" (Jn 2:5). Silently kill the culture of death.

Prayer:  Father, I accept Your power to bring down the strongholds of the evil one (2 Cor 10:4).

Promise:  "Here is My Servant Whom I have chosen, My loved One in Whom I delight." —Mt 12:18

Praise:  St. Lawrence was a chaplain-general who exhorted his troops and rode in front of them armed only with a crucifix.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, January 4, 2001

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, January 24, 2001