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Sunday, November 7, 2004

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32nd Sunday Ordinary Time

2 Maccabees 7:1-2, 9-14
2 Thessalonians 2:16—3:5
Psalm 17
Luke 20:27-38

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family prayer

"It also happened that seven brothers with their mother were arrested and tortured with whips and scourges by the king." —2 Maccabees 7:1

This nameless Old Testament family prefigures the Christian family. How holy, fearless, and faithful a family can be when they are united with the Lord and one another and are deeply grounded in faith in Jesus' resurrection and our resurrection from the dead! This family loved God and each other so much that all seven brothers with their mother suffered mutilation, torture, and execution so as to be faithful to the Lord. This was a family of eight saints, all martyred.

In the new covenant, we have even greater graces to have the holiest families. "That is why I kneel before the Father from Whom every family in heaven and on earth takes its name; and I pray that He will bestow on you gifts in keeping with the riches of His glory" (Eph 3:14-16).          "May He strengthen you inwardly through the working of His Spirit" (Eph 3:16). "May Christ dwell in your hearts through faith" (Eph 3:17). "May charity be the root and foundation of your life. Thus you will be able to grasp fully, with all the holy ones, the breadth and length and height and depth of Christ's love" (Eph 3:17-18).

Because the Lord has revealed this family prayer to us, He will certainly answer it. By His grace, your family can enter into unimaginable realms of holiness and ultimately have a family reunion in heaven without any family member missing. Through daily family prayer of the above family prayer, accept the grace to be a holy family.

Prayer:  Lord, direct our "hearts in the love of God and the constancy of Christ" (2 Thes 3:5).

Promise:  "The Lord keeps faith; He it is Who will strengthen you and guard you against the evil one." —2 Thes 3:3

Praise:  Praise the risen Jesus, Who helps us "attain to the fullness of God"! (Eph 3:19)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, March 30, 2004

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 1, 2004