After commissioning His 12 Apostles and then an expanded group of 70 disciples to go and preach the Gospel, Christ welcomes them back, rejoicing that the Kingdom has been preached.  Granting them superhuman powers, including immunity from deadly snakes/scorpions and the attacks of the enemy (Satan), Christ warns them to not rejoice in the powers granted but to rejoice because He will list their names as saints in Heaven.

Turning to the Father from whom all blessings flow, Christ rejoices that the great plan of Salvation History is being accomplished. In just a few short lines, Christ’s prayer to the Father is a powerful blessing that reveals the closeness of the Father and the Son. He reveals the perfect love between the Father and the Son. He reveals His perfect obedience to and reverence for the Father. He expresses His heart-deep thanks for His Father’s blessings. He acknowledges the power the Father has given Him in the world. He confirms the Father’s dominion over Creation.

Christ’s prayer also reveals how men can draw closer to God the Father. Through His example, Christ demonstrates how men can speak with God. He reveals that through the Father’s gracious will, God is hidden from the arrogant (self-proclaimed “wise”) and revealed to the innocent (infants); that only through humble obedience and dependence, men can be open to receiving Christ’s Wisdom. To receive Wisdom, He reveals that the only way to God the Father is through the Son. After Christ’s prayer, He privately reveals to the disciples the profound blessing they have been given in their witness of His prayer in the Holy Spirit to the Father.

Awed by Jesus Christ – Person of the Trinity, Christ reveals glimpses of the relationship of the Father and the Son. Son of God, Jesus asserts that God has the power to influence the lives of men and does so. Almighty King, Christ reveals that only through Him can men be drawn to the Father. Divine Teacher, Christ reveals the profound blessing the disciples have been given in their witness of Christ’s conversation with the Father.

Being a Heroic Catholic Man

1) The Church reminds men during Advent of the many blessed mysteries of Christ. Reflect on the astounding truth that Christ, recognized by most by His human nature, is a Divine Person who shares an incomprehensible intimacy with God the Father.

2) Some men have wonderful human fathers, many don’t. Despite the failings of human fathers, every Catholic man has the ability to be drawn to God, the Perfect Father.  During Advent (meaning, “to come”) , pray for Christ to help you to draw close to God the Father and to be fathered by Him.

3) Each Catholic man, including those with biological children and those without, is called to be a spiritual father who brings spiritual children to God the Father. Reflect on Christ’s dependence on His Father and pray for Christ to help you grow in your vocation of spiritual fatherhood.

Spiritual Practices – Include in Today’s Prayers

Sacred Mystery of Rosary – The Sorrowful Mysteries

Daily Devotion – The Guardian Angels

Virtue of the Day – Justice

Corporal Work of Mercy – To clothe the naked

Spiritual Work of Mercy – To counsel the doubtful