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Since 1732, the Redemptorists — a congregation of missionary priests and brothers — have followed in Jesus’ footsteps, preaching the Word and serving the poor and most abandoned.
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Lenten reflection, day 23

One challenge of our time is that of our “lost souls,” people who were practicing members of our faith community and have drifted away.

Parents experience this with their children and wonder, “Was it something we did or didn’t do? And how can we bring them back?”

Today’s Gospel points to an answer. It tells of “a royal official whose son was ill,” who went to Jesus, asking Him to come and heal his son. Jesus tells him, “you may go; your son will live.” The Gospel says “the man believed Jesus and left.”

And “while the man was on his way, his slaves met him and told him that his boy would live.” The Gospel ends with the words, “he and his whole household came to believe.”

It was the faith of the father that healed his son. The faith of the household came later. This happens often in the Gospels. People are saved by the faith of others.

Our prayers for our youth are important—as well as our good example and advice. But most of all, it is our faith in Jesus’ acting in them that will bring them home.

Father Thomas Travers, C.Ss.R.
Esopus, N.Y.

Scripture readings for today: Isaiah 65:17-21; Psalm 30; John 4:43-54