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Wednesday, February 3, 2010

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St. Blase
St. Ansgar

2 Samuel 24:2, 9-17
Psalm 32:1-2, 5-7
Mark 6:1-6

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down for the count

"Afterward, however, David regretted having numbered the people, and said to the Lord: 'I have sinned grievously.' " —2 Samuel 24:10

David committed serious sins in his life. For example, he committed adultery and arranged for the husband of his mistress to be killed. One of David's worst sins was not so spectacular. Against God's will, David counted the number of men fit for military duty in Israel and Judah. This sin resulted in the deaths of seventy thousand people (2 Sm 24:15).

Counting can be a calling from God, but it can also be a sin. For example, counting the times we've been offended can be a sin against love (see 1 Cor 13:5). Counting money can be a sin of greed. Counting people in your church, ministry, or prayer group can be a sin of pride. Counting someone out may be a sin of unforgiveness or arrogance. Even counting our blessings can be an occasion of comparing ourselves to others.

When we were little children, someone taught us to count. Yet have we ever learned to count responsibly and not sinfully? Jesus is the divine Accountant. Let Him audit your books, and take over your life.

Prayer:  "Through the intercession of St. Blase, bishop and martyr, may you be delivered from every ailment of the throat and every other illness."

Promise:  "He began to teach in the synagogue in a way that kept His large audience amazed." —Mk 6:2

Praise:  St. Blase, bishop and martyr in Armenia, was known for being one of the Holy Helpers.

Reference:  (Lent is approaching. To help you observe Lent more deeply, order our leaflet, Lent and the Renewal of Our Baptismal Promises, or on tape titled Baptismal Promises on audio AV 83-1, AV 83-3, AV 84-1, AV 84-3 or video V-83, V-84.)

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 26, 2009

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