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Sunday, March 8, 2020

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Second Sunday of Lent

Genesis 12:1-4
2 Timothy 1:8-10
Psalm 33:4-5, 18-20, 22
Matthew 17:1-9

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the greatest

"This is My beloved Son on Whom My favor rests. Listen to Him." —Matthew 17:5

Abram (Abraham) is the father of many nations (see Gn 12:2-3). He was and continues to be a blessing to the Jewish people, Muslims, and Christians. Yet as great as Abraham is, "the least born into the kingdom of God is greater than he" (Mt 11:11). As sons and daughters of God the Father, we Christians are called to the greatest of greatness.

We fulfill our amazing potential only by listening to Jesus (Mt 17:5). He alone is the Truth of our lives and the Way to live the life of ultimate greatness (see Jn 14:6).

Nevertheless, even in our new nature through Baptism, we have difficulty listening to and obeying Jesus. We need God the Father to reveal to our hearts and minds the divinity of His Son (see Mt 17:5). When we believe in Jesus' divinity on a deep level, we will listen and submit to Him as God. Also, we need the Holy Spirit, the third Person of the divine Trinity, to proclaim to us that "Jesus is Lord," that is, God (1 Cor 12:3). The three apostles at Jesus' Transfiguration rightly listened, submitted to the Lord, and became great only after the Holy Spirit descended on them at the first Christian Pentecost. We likewise need a new Pentecost to believe in a life-changing way in Jesus' divinity so as to fulfill our call to greatness.

On this second Sunday of Lent, may God the Father and God the Holy Spirit confirm profoundly Jesus' divinity, and may we listen to Jesus as God, do as He wills, and be great as He wills.

Prayer:  Father, renew my Baptism today.

Promise:  "With the strength which comes from God bear your share of the hardship which the gospel entails." —2 Tm 1:8

Praise:  Praise You, Jesus. Through Your Resurrection we have access to the Father. Our "faith and hope, then, are centered in God" (see 1 Pt 1:21).

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 8, 2019

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