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Monday, January 6, 2003

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Bl. André Bessette
(USA and Canada)

1 John 3:22—4:6
Psalm 2
Matthew 4:12-17, 23-25

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the greatest day of christmas?

"The people who sit in darkness have seen a great light." —Matthew 4:16

Throughout much of the world, today is the highlight of the Christmas season, the feast of the Epiphany. The purpose of each person's life is to follow the star, find Jesus, give Him the gift of our life, worship Him, and manifest the light of Christ to the ends of the earth (see Mt 2:10ff). Then the prophecy will be fulfilled: "The people who sit in darkness have seen a great light, on those dwelling in a land overshadowed by death light has arisen" (Mt 4:16).

Therefore, let us follow:

  • the star of repentance, for "the kingdom of heaven is at hand" (Mt 4:17),
  • the star of prayer "and receive from Him whatever we ask" (1 Jn 3:22), and
  • the star of service. "Serve the Lord with fear; with trembling bow down in homage, lest God be angry and you perish from the way in a sudden blaze of anger. Happy are all who take refuge in God!" (Ps 2:11)

In effect, let us follow the star of obedience. Only by strict and careful obedience will we find Jesus. Those who obey Him will find Him and remain in Him, and He will remain in them (1 Jn 3:24).

In these last seven days of Christmas, may we be wise enough to give ourselves totally to Christ, let Him break new ground in our lives, and take us where we've never been before. Let us plunge ever more deeply into the infinite love of the triune God. Let us be consumed by the fire of His love (see Heb 12:29).

Prayer:  Father, give me Your kind of Christmas.

Promise:  "And the way we know that He remains in us is from the Spirit that He gave us." —1 Jn 3:24

Praise:  Bl. André was a humble Holy Cross brother in Montreal through whom God healed many. Although barely literate, His ministry touched 80,000 letter-writers per year.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend David L. Zink, June 12, 2002

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 13, 2002