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Saturday, December 5, 2009

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Isaiah 30:19-21, 23-26
Psalm 147:1-6
Matthew 9:35—10:1, 5-8

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the jesus tour: 2009

"Jesus continued His tour of all the towns and villages." —Matthew 9:35

Rock stars and politicians are known for making a tour of various cities. They have nothing on Jesus. He made His first world tour nearly two-thousand years ago when He "taught in their synagogues, He proclaimed the good news of God's reign, and He cured every sickness and disease" (Mt 9:35).

Modern-day rock stars and politicians have advance publicity to generate excitement and promote attendance on their tours. Jesus, however, had centuries of advance publicity. His Father sent front men like the prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Nathan. God even sent a shining star (Mt 2:2). As the days neared for the tour of Jesus the Messiah, God sent John the Baptizer to prepare the way. John attracted crowds through a lifestyle that was bizarre even by today's standards (see Mk 1:6).

Jesus toured all the towns and villages, not just the big-market stops. "At the sight of the crowds, His heart was moved with pity" (Mt 9:36) rather than dollar signs. His tour gained momentum until, at His final stop in Jerusalem, His tour came to a victorious end with His sacrificial death on the cross followed by His glorious resurrection.

Jesus is touring again this Christmas. But the message, "Jesus is coming to town" has been replaced with "Santa Claus is coming to town." Crowds flock to see Santa and abandon churches. When Jesus comes this Christmas, may He not have to ask: "Why was no one there when I came?" (Is 50:2) Come, let us adore Him.

Prayer:  Father, may I seek Jesus like the wise men did (Mt 2:1ff).

Promise:  "He will be gracious to you when you cry out, as soon as He hears He will answer you." —Is 30:19

Praise:  Joyce dropped out of the choir because she had allowed it to become too much like a performance. She fixed her eyes on Jesus (Heb 12:2) and focused on worship during Mass.

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 4, 2009

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