Acts, Chapter 3, Verse 16
And by faith in his name, this man, whom you see and know, his name has made strong, and the faith that comes through it has given him this perfect health, in the presence of all of you.
Peter at the beginning of Christ’s approach to him said Lord Leave me for I am a sinful man-and he was. Notice that after the resurrection Peter was changed and now took on the work of Christ. We are all sinners we are all lame as the man in this verse but by faith we can do the work of Christ and He will change us.
Demonstration + Proclamation = Credibility
After Pentecost when the apostle received the Holy Spirit they started to build the church: The Kingdom of God. Peter and John encountered a lame man on their way to temple. Using only the name of Jesus they healed the man and they gained credibility because they did what they said, “they walked the talk.” As their credibility grew so did the church. Note how Acts 3 (Acts 3:1-26) describes these leaders:
1. They faithfully did what they knew to do.
2. They stopped and sensitively addressed needs.
3. They had courage to face problems.
4. Others anticipated receiving solutions from them.
5. They realistically admitted their lack of material resources.
6. They generously gave away their spiritual resources.
7. They solved practical problems.
8. They gained credibility through demonstration, not just proclamation.
9. Peter’s demonstration gave him a platform and a convincing argument.
Please pray for the soul of a great priest and friend of mine who I had the pleasure of knowing while stationed in Belgium-Father Paul Wolff. Paul was General Patton’s guide during the “Battle of the Bulge” while he was still a teen. Paul introduced me to St. Hubert and I would like to introduce you to this priest and national hero over the next few blog entries; more to come.
Late in the eighth century, so runs the story, a hunter named Hubert, neither better nor worse than he should have been, was tracking a stag through the forest of the Ardennes. As he readied himself to shoot the animal with his arrow, he was startled when the stag turned suddenly in its flight, and he saw between its antlers a luminous cross. This experience caused Hubert to change his way of life, and he never hunted again. Yet only a few centuries later he was known as the patron of hunters, and is a saint greatly honored in France and Belgium.
Saint Hubert lived a full life. He became bishop of Tongres and traveled through his huge diocese on horseback and by boat, preaching and building churches to the glory of God. He was the friend of the great of his day — Pepin of Heristal and Charles Martel among them — and also of the poor. In particular his heart went out to prisoners, and he would secretly place food for them before their dungeon windows. As he died he said to those about him, "Stretch the pallium over my mouth for I am now going to give back to God the soul I received from Him."
In parts of France and Belgium there has long been a custom of holding stag hunts on Saint Hubert's Day, and the hunters gather before the chase for Mass and the blessing of men and horses and dogs. After the hunt is over, those taking part gather for a bountiful breakfast consisting of fish, meat, salad, cheese, and dessert. Naturally the meat is venison of some sort, and the salad may well be one of dandelion greens.
Excerpted from Feast Day Cookbook
Patron: Archers; dog bite; dogs; forest workers; furriers; hunters; hunting; huntsmen; hydrophobia; liege, Belgium; machinists; mad dogs; mathematicians; metal workers; precision instrument makers; rabies; smelters; trappers.
Things to Do:
- Have roast venison in honor of St. Hubert, patron of hunters.
Poor souls in Purgatory
The Dogma of Purgatory is too much forgotten by the majority of the faithful; the Church Suffering, where they have so many brethren to succor, whither they foresee that they themselves must one day go, seems a strange land to them. This truly deplorable forgetfulness was a great sorrow to St. Francis de Sales. “Alas!” said this pious doctor of the Church, “we do not sufficiently remember our dear departed; their memory seems to perish with the sound of the funeral bells.” The principal causes of this are ignorance and lack of faith; our notions on the subject of Purgatory are too vague, our faith is too feeble. In order, then, that our ideas may become more distinct and our faith enlivened, we must take a closer view of this life beyond the tomb, this intermediate state of the just souls, not yet worthy to enter the Heavenly Jerusalem.