Who is the Thief? Exploring One of Jesus’ More Provocative Images

One of the more interesting and surprising images the Lord used for Himself was “thief.” There is an indirect reference to this in the first reading for Tuesday of the 22nd week of the year. I’ll comment more on that passage in a moment, but first here are some other texts in which He used this imagery:

But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into

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Pro-life Democrats make the case for a 22-week abortion ban in Colorado

Denver, Colo., Oct 20, 2020 / 07:01 pm (CNA).- As Colorado voters consider a ballot measure to ban abortion after 22 weeks of pregnancy, pro-life Democrats have been vocal in support, stressing its mainstream appeal and the need to give care to vulnerable human beings who can survive outside of the womb.

“When people realize abortion is allowed up to birth for any reason in Colorado most are shocked. People travel from all over the U.S. and even the world to Colorado to get late-term abortions,” Kristin Vail, vice president of Democrats for Life of Colorado, told CNA Oct. 19. “I don’t think people want our state to be known for that.”

“Every human has value and deserves to live free from violence. Late-term abortions are especially horrific because at 22 weeks fetuses can feel pain and can survive outside the womb with medical support,” Vail said. “Proposition 115 will save lives from abortion.”

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ACN Announces Fresh Help for Beirut

Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) has announced another massive program of aid to help Beirut rise up from the ashes following the explosion in August.

The latest grants by the charity for persecuted and other suffering Christians mean that in total ACN has committed €5 million (£4.53m) in the wake of the 4th August 2020 blast, which killed more than 200 people, with at least 6,000 injured and more than 300,000 made homeless.

The aid, announced yesterday (15th October), mostly provides repairs for church buildings in the immediate vicinity of the blast which caused particularly serious damage to a historic Christian quarter of the Lebanese capital.

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Franciscan Friars Give Hope to Christians Living Under Sharia in Idlib Province, Syria

The villages of Knayeh and Yacoubieh, in Idlib province, close to the Turkish border in western Syria, still find themselves under the control of jihadist groups. Here the fearsome Islamic caliphate still holds sway; the sharia is the law, women are forced to wear veils, Christian properties have been confiscated and Christian symbols such as crosses torn down.

Among the local inhabitants who have remained in their homes despite the terrible situation, there are an estimated 300 Christian families of different denominations and ethnic groups. Two Franciscan friars, Luai Bsharat, aged 40, and 67-year-old Hanna Jallouf, have also stayed on here to minister to them.

The Christians remaining in these areas are facing persecution, fear, violence and danger, and even death. So the continuing presence of the Christians in these villages, and of the two Franciscan friars, says much about their heroic commitment. “In spite of the difficulties, Father Luai and Father Hanna have stayed on there because they believe that this region should not be abandoned. For it is close to Antioch, where Saint Paul began his travels, spreading the Word of God”, explains Father Firas Lutfi OFM, who is Custodian of the Province of Saint Paul for the Franciscans of Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan. He is speaking to the international Catholic pastoral charity and pontifical foundation ACN International.

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