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Gospel Reading: Lk 21:12-19
Jesus said to the crowd: “They will seize and persecute you, they will hand you over to the synagogues and to prisons, and they will have you led before kings and governors because of my name. It will lead to your giving testimony. Remember, you are not to prepare your defense beforehand, for I myself shall give you a wisdom in speaking that all your adversaries will be powerless to resist or refute. You will even be handed over by parents, brothers, relatives, and friends, and they will put some of you to death. You will be hated by all because of my name, but not a hair on your head will be destroyed. By your perseverance you will secure your lives.”
Jesus teaches us how to cope with hatred and persecution from civil and religious authorities before the end of the world. We must persevere doing good. We must continue giving testimony to those who persecute us, throw us into prison, and bring us before kings and other authorities. We keep on testifying because we believe God’s Spirit is with us. There is no cowering in fear. We must persevere bearing witness to our loved ones, even if they reject us and deliver us to death. We must not stop evangelizing even if they do not listen to us and find our faith in Christ abhorrent. Some religious groups today preach hatred towards Christians because of historical baggage. They live in the past, capitalizing on what happened in the past. Some Christian groups try to win our weak members to their group, by exploiting their ignorance about the faith and confusing them. To be saved at the end of time, we must persevere in our witnessing. We should never compromise our faith. We must keep telling people that God, the Father of Jesus, loves them and awaits their conversion. The Church, too, loves them. The doors of our churches and communities are wide open for them. We welcome them to our ranks. We want to be reconciled with them. This is the way the Lord saves us and them, through our perseverance.
Is perseverance part of your vocabulary?
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SOURCE: “366 Days with the Lord,” ST PAULS, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.