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Friday

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ARE WE IN TRAINING TO PROCLAIM THE GOOD NEWS?

Liturgical Colour: 

1 Cor. 9:16-19, 22-27 & Lk. 6:39-42

Saint Paul’s conversion to Christianity was, as we know, sudden and dramatic. From that moment he found the Gospel so exciting that he felt impelled to spend the rest of his life sharing it with others. It was so important to him that he gave his preaching freely, supporting himself by working as a tentmaker.

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WORK FOR JESUS: IT DOESN’T MATTER WHAT OTHERS THINK OF US

Liturgical Colour: 

1 Cor. 4:1-6 & Lk. 5:33-39

Our modern world lays great importance on status and titles but Saint Paul showed himself to be a true follower of Jesus - by his lack of concern for how others viewed him. How he wanted to be known was quite humble by the standards of his day, “Christ’s servant and steward entrusted with the mystery of God.” They were not affirmations of power!

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WE MUST BE PREPARED FOR THE LORD’S COMING

Liturgical Colour: 

1 Cor. 1-17-25 & Mt. 25:1-13

The city of Corinth was a cosmopolitan centre in the first century, similar to places like today’s London or New York. There was some influence of Greek philosophy but the people were worldly wise who would not easily take to the Gospel. It was a miracle of grace that St Paul could win even a few converts there and it was not surprising that some of them began to fall away - Christianity is not a doctrine which appeals to the worldly wise!

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DO WE THINK OF GOD AS A FRIEND?

Liturgical Colour: 

Ez. 37:1-14 & MT. 22:34-40

The remarkable vision of the dry bones recorded by Ezekiel took place in Babylon where the conquered Israelites were in exile. The people felt that their nation was as good as dead, like the bones of corpses fallen in battle and allowed to rot and dry in the sun. They thought that their situation was hopeless. Is there anything more dead than dry bones?

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GOD LAVISHES HIS LOVE ON HIS PEOPLE

Liturgical Colour: 

Ez. 16:1-15, 60, 63 & Mt. 19:3-12

Ezekiel recounts, in a tender and graphic style, the immense love and mercy that God had shown His people. He had found them in pitiable and desperate plight, unloved and without hope; He could have left them to their fate but instead He commanded life for them and adopted them as His own.

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ONLY JESUS HAS THE ANSWER TO DEATH

Liturgical Colour: 

Nahum 2:1, 3:1-3, 6-7 & Mt. 16:24-28

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WE ARE CALLED TO BUILD UP GOD'S KINGDOM ON EARTH

Liturgical Colour: 

Jer. 26:1-9 & Mt. 13:54-58

When Jeremiah preached he had no idea that all of his work was really going to bear fruit in one person. Nor did he even suspect that there would be similarities between that person and himself. Had he known this, perhaps his mission would have seemed easier and his burden lighter.

That one person was, of course, Jesus Christ Who like Jeremiah preached a message of repentance, but with little of his harshness. His message was really overladen with love despite His meeting with rejection and rebuff as had Jeremiah.

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HOW GOD IS WITH US

Liturgical Colour: 

Jer. 3:14-17 & Mt. 13:18-23

There are different ways to receive God's word - joyfully and fruitfully, or with indifference, resentment and frustration. Sadly we can even just reject it. That is the meaning of today's Gospel parable.

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GOD SPEAKS TO US IN SUBTLE WAYS

Liturgical Colour: 

Is. 38:1-6, 21-22, 7-8 & Mt. 12:1-8

Hezekiah, king of Judah, was desperate. Sennacherib, the Assyrian king, had declared war on all the fortified cities of Judah and captured them. Now he was heading towards Jerusalem, the capital and Hezekiah's home. To make matters even worse, Hezekiah was facing a mortal illness. He turned to God in fervent prayer, and the Lord sent Isaiah with a message: Hezekiah would be healed, and the Lord would rescue the city.

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GOD IS ALWAYS THERE TO HELP US

Liturgical Colour: 

Hos. 14:2-10 & Mt. 10:16-23

Hosea is the prophet of God's love. Yesterday we saw how His love was touching and tender. He presented God as a Father who scoops His child, Israel, into His arms and presses him against His cheek. Today, fully aware of Israel's disobedience, he cries out, "Return, O Israel, to the Lord your God." His words easily make us think of the parable of the prodigal son returning to His Father. That too is a touching and tender scene, an image of how God completely loves us despite our failures.

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