Mass Readings: August 19

First: Ruth 1:1,3-6,14-16,22
Resp: Psalm 146:5-10
Gospel: Matthew 22:34-40
Reprinted from Presentation Ministries, a lay association of the Catholic Church that focuses on evangelization and discipleship through Bible teaching, daily Mass, the charisms of the Holy Spirit, and Small Christian Community.

THE PRICE OF FAITHFULNESS

"Ruth said, 'Do not ask me to abandon or forsake you! For wherever you go I will go, wherever you lodge I will lodge, your people shall be my people, and your God my God." –Ruth 1:16

For Ruth to be faithful to her mother-in-law Naomi, she had to go where Naomi went, live where Naomi lived, relate to Naomi's people, and worship Naomi's God. Love and fidelity require a practical, social, relational, and spiritual unity. We must do nothing less than lay down our lives for others if we are to be faithful in loving them (1 Jn 3:16). In love, we make ourselves "all things to all men" (1 Cor 9:22). To be faithful to our brothers and sisters in Christ, we need "unanimity, possessing the one love" (Phil 2:2). "Let all parties think humbly of others as superior to themselves, each of you looking to others' interests rather than to his own. Your attitude must be that of Christ" (Phil 2:3-5). "In summary, then, all of you should be like-minded, sympathetic, loving toward one another, kindly disposed, and humble" (1 Pt 3:8).

Through His Incarnation, God went where we go, lodged where we lodge, lived where we live, and died where we die. Jesus loves us faithfully. In Jesus and like Ruth, love faithfully.

PRAYER: Father, I will be faithful to You and Your people until death.
PROMISE: "Jesus said to him: 'You shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart, with your whole soul, and with all your mind.' This is the greatest and first commandment. The second is like it: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' " –Mt 22:37-39
PRAISE: St. John Eudes preached throughout France on the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Immaculate Heart of Mary. He was moved to help the least and the sinful of society.