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Friday, August 24, 2001

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St. Bartholomew

Revelation 21:9-14
Psalm 145
John 1:45-51

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desperation or invitation?

"Philip sought out Nathanael and told him, 'We have found the One Moses spoke of.' " —John 1:45

Bartholomew (Nathanael) was prejudiced against Jesus because Jesus came "from the wrong side of the tracks" (see Jn 1:46). But Philip ignored Nathanael's attitude and invited him to "Come, see for yourself" (Jn 1:46). Nathanael soon proclaimed his faith in Jesus by saying of Jesus: "You are the Son of God; You are the King of Israel" (Jn 1:49).

Like Philip, we are surrounded by prejudiced, sinful people such as Nathanael. Moreover, we ourselves are sinners (1 Jn 1:8). We can be exasperated by the sins of the world and our own hard-heartedness, or we can come and see Jesus for ourselves and invite others to do the same. We can give up on this culture of death. Alternatively, we may even naively try to change it by human efforts and then soon give up. Conversely, we can extend to others the invitation that changed Nathanael's life: "Come, see (Jesus) for yourself."

Jesus is our only Hope. His name is the only name "by which we are to be saved" (Acts 4:12). Therefore, we should live to invite others to come and see Jesus for themselves. We must exist to evangelize.

Prayer:  Father, I will witness for Your Son in life and death.

Promise:  "The wall of the city had twelve courses of stones as its foundation, on which were written the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb." —Rv 21:14

Praise:  St. Bartholomew's conversion was so complete that his original skepticism concerning Jesus was transformed into his laying down his life for Him in martyrdom.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, February 13, 2001

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 20, 2001