Azariah stood up in the fire and prayed aloud:
“For your name’s sake, O Lord, do not deliver us up forever,
or make void your covenant.
Do not take away your mercy from us,
for the sake of Abraham, your beloved,
Isaac your servant, and Israel your holy one,
To whom you promised to multiply their offspring
like the stars of heaven,
or the sand on the shore of the sea.
For we are reduced, O Lord, beyond any other nation,
brought low everywhere in the world this day
because of our sins.
We have in our day no prince, prophet, or leader,
no burnt offering, sacrifice, oblation, or incense,
no place to offer first fruits, to find favor with you.
But with contrite heart and humble spirit
let us be received;
As though it were burnt offerings of rams and bullocks,
or thousands of fat lambs,
So let our sacrifice be in your presence today
as we follow you unreservedly;
for those who trust in you cannot be put to shame.
And now we follow you with our whole heart,
we fear you and we pray to you.
Do not let us be put to shame,
but deal with us in your kindness and great mercy.
Deliver us by your wonders,
and bring glory to your name, O Lord.”
New American Bible, Revised Edition (NABRE), copyright 2011. USCCB approved.
In today’s first reading, Azariah discusses the covenant between God and his people. Although the covenant has grown with Jesus’ coming, we can still look to it for one unchanging truth: we are in a special relationship with God. Whenever we feel lonely, we can turn to this eternal relationship. The first reading provides several ways we can improve this bond, like trusting in Him and praying to Him. However, there are endless possibilities for how to grow closer to God.
The theme for our school year is human dignity, and one great, specific way to grow closer to God is by strengthening our relationships with others, even those we don’t necessarily spend much time around. Because we are all made in the image and likeness of God, when we respect each other, we are also respecting God.
– Joe Mantych ‘19 & Luke Alfaro ‘19 are members of the Sophomore Pastoral Team at St. Louis U. High.
Lord, it can be difficult to love those around us. We get in fights with classmates, siblings, and even parents, and sometimes it feels like repairing those relationships is impossible. For today, we ask for the guidance to forgive those who have wronged us and also to apologize to those we have wronged ourselves.
-Joe Mantych ’19 & Luke Alfaro ’19
Please share the Good Word with your friends!