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"We thank God unceasingly for you, brothers, because your faith grows apace and your mutual love increases; so much so that in God's communities we can boast of your constancy and your faith in persecution and trial." —2 Thessalonians 1:3-4
The Christian community of Thessalonica was famous for its faith. Paul proclaimed: "Throughout every region your faith in God is celebrated" (1 Thes 1:8). The Lord wants us to have famous faith as well. May your faith be celebrated, imitated, and surpassed by your children and their children's children, until Christ comes again. May your parish church be famous not primarily for its size, budget, activities, creativity, or antiquity, but because of its faith. May your country be famous not so much for its gross national product, technology, military, or creature comforts, but for its faith.
We must have faith, for we are saved by grace by faith (Eph 2:8). Moreover, we need as deep a faith as possible (see Mk 9:24). When Jesus comes again, He will be looking for our faith (see Lk 18:8). When we pray at Mass before receiving Holy Communion, we ask the Lord to look at the faith of the Church, including our faith. Jesus is looking and will continue to look. Does He see famous faith?
Prayer: Father, send the Holy Spirit to give me the gift of faith (1 Cor 12:9) and to produce in me the fruit of faith (Gal 5:22).
Promise: "We pray for you always that our God may make you worthy of His call, and fulfill by His power every honest intention and work of faith." —2 Thes 1:11
Praise: Fr. Tony took over a parish with over $700,000 of debt. Without having any fund-raisers, but just by raising faith in the parish, the parish was set free from debt by Easter eight months later.
Reference: (For information or to register for the Retreat for the Divorced September 6-8, e-mail email@example.com or call 937-587-5464.)
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, February 7, 2002
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 12, 2002