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Saturday, June 25, 2005

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Genesis 18:1-15
Luke 1:46-50, 53-55
Matthew 8:5-17

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blessed are the hospitable

"Let some water be brought, that you may bathe your feet, and then rest yourselves under the tree. Now that you have come this close to your servant, let me bring you a little food." —Genesis 18:4-5

Abraham ran up to three strangers and begged them for the privilege of offering them hospitality. Unknowingly he offered hospitality to God and two angels. This prompted the writer of Hebrews to command us: "Do not neglect to show hospitality, for by that means some have entertained angels without knowing it" (Heb 13:2).

Paul also commanded us to "be generous in offering hospitality" (Rm 12:13). When we offer hospitality by giving someone even a cup of cold water, we will not go unrewarded (see Mt 10:42). When we feed the hungry or give drink to the thirsty, we are giving service to God (Mt 25:40).

Showing hospitality is one of the main qualifications for being a Christian leader (1 Tm 3:2; Ti 1:8). Therefore, we should not only offer hospitality without complaining (1 Pt 4:9), but also beg people to accept our hospitality (e.g. Acts 16:15; Gn 18:4-5). Hospitality is a great privilege. Jesus Himself will offer His faithful ones hospitality at the end of the world. "It will go well with those servants whom the Master finds wide-awake on His return. I tell you, He will put on an apron, seat them at table, and proceed to wait on them" (Lk 12:37). Blessed are the hospitable: they shall serve God and be served by Him.

Prayer:  Father, may I welcome everyone as if they were You and Your angels.

Promise:  "He took her by the hand and the fever left her. She got up at once and began to wait on Him." —Mt 8:15

Praise:  Don and Jean were so hospitable to their teenage children's friends that even now, thirty years later, many of those "kids" take time to visit them on holidays and special occasions.

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 20, 2004

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