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Tuesday, January 7, 2020

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St. Raymond of Peñafort

1 John 4:7-10
Psalm 72:1-4, 7-8
Mark 6:34-44

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do i love?

"Love, then, consists in this: not that we have loved God but that He has loved us and has sent His Son as an Offering for our sins." —1 John 4:10

Every Christmas season, the Lord through the Church calls us to read, pray, and live the first letter of John. In this letter, the Lord calls us His "beloved," who are called to love one another (1 Jn 4:7). The Lord God even reveals that He is Love and those who abide in Love abide in Him (1 Jn 4:16).

Because God is Love, it is most important that we love Him, others, and even our enemies. Therefore, it stands to reason that the devil, "the father of lies" (Jn 8:44), would specialize in lying to us about love. Almost everyone thinks of themselves as a loving person, but our self-seeking lifestyles, broken relationships, separated families, divided Church, and culture of death present incontrovertible evidence that the love of many people is growing cold (Mt 24:12). Ironically, lukewarm commitment to the Lord (see Rv 3:16) results in a love gone cold, and Christianity in much of the world is obviously lukewarm. Are you truly in love?

This Christmas season, let us admit and repent of our lovelessness. When we face where we are, we can grow into the love which at present we may only pretend to have. Let us allow Jesus, our true Love, to give us true love.

Prayer:  Father, purify me "by obedience to the truth...for a genuine love" (1 Pt 1:22).

Promise:  "The people took their places in hundreds and fifties, neatly arranged like flower beds. Then, taking the five loaves and the two fish, Jesus raised His eyes to heaven, pronounced a blessing, broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples to distribute. He divided the two fish among all of them and they ate until they had their fill." —Mk 6:40-42

Praise:  In the Thirteenth Century, Pope Gregory IX entrusted St. Raymond with the enormous task of systematizing the Church's decrees. His thorough work remained the basis for canon law until 1917.

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 2, 2019

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