Most Holy Body – Most Holy Blood of Christ

A Story of Two Covenants

Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ – Corpus Christi

June 3, 2018

Passover pt. 1

Moses came and told the people all the words of the Lord and all the ordinances; and all the people answered with one voice, and said, ‘All the words that the Lord has spoken we will do.’ And Moses wrote down all the words of the Lord. He rose early in the morning, and built an altar at the foot of the mountain, and set up twelve pillars, corresponding to the twelve tribes of Israel. He sent young men of the people of Israel, who offered burnt-offerings and sacrificed oxen as offerings of well-being to the LordMoses took half of the blood and put it in basins, and half of the blood he dashed against the altar. Then he took the book of the covenant, and read it in the hearing of the people; and they said, ‘All that the Lord has spoken we will do, and we will be obedient.’ Moses took the blood and dashed it on the people, and said, ‘See the blood of the covenant that the Lord has made with you in accordance with all these words.’ – Exodus24:3-8 New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition (NRSVACE)

Insight One: Being the Year of Grace – I want to point out that in the events upon Mt. Sinai we can extrapolate the overwhelming love of God shown to His people. It is not enough to set one free but rather to give freedom with responsibility which shapes character and builts a morally just person.  Thus, in this love, God is seen molding His people through Moses and giving them a first (Exodus 19-23) and even second opportunity, (Exodus 24) to get it right – so that the words spoken would have depth of purpose and a resounding historical meaning that which cements the foundational convenient, that by all accounts is God showing mankind absolute grace! As for the Israelites, they were literally, “taking on the yoke of the Kingdom of Heaven” (Berachot 2, 2).

Reflection One: Moses acting as the intermediary consecrated the people, forming a covenant with God, and delivers laws to the Israelites that will set them apart from every other nation on earth. The laws Moses reads from the BOOK OF THE COVENANT , covered many topics which included;

Before we go any further let’s look at the underlying symbology which is repeated later with Jesus and the New Covenant;

‘Words of the Covenant’ – Passover Night

– Moses reaches Mt. Sinai where God delivers His divine word and promise that if the Israelites obey they will be God’s Priestly Kingdom.  (Exodus 19:1-6)

– Jesus speaks the words that outline His divinity, offering a new and everlasting covenant through His sacrifice consecrated with His body and blood. (John 13-17

‘Covenant Sacrifice Prepared’ – Passover Day

–  Moses told the people what God had said, “the next day he built an altar at the foot of the mountain, and set up twelve pillars, corresponding to the twelve tribes of Israel. He sent young men of the people of Israel, who offered burnt-offerings and sacrificed oxen as offerings of well-being to the Lord.” –Exodus 24:3-8

– Jesus is brought before the Sanhedrin who find him guilty, they send Him to Pilot who has him whipped. Still not satisfied The Jews call for Jesus’s execution. Jesus then is taken and nailed upon the cross at Calvary or Golgotha where He gives His life in payment of our sins. – John 18-19

Passover pt. 2 – 1,680 Years Later

12 On the first day of Unleavened Bread, when the Passover lamb is sacrificed, his disciples said to him, ‘Where do you want us to go and make the preparations for you to eat the Passover?’ 13 So he sent two of his disciples, saying to them, ‘Go into the city, and a man carrying a jar of water will meet you; follow him, 14 and wherever he enters, say to the owner of the house, “The Teacher asks, Where is my guest room where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?” 15 He will show you a large room upstairs, furnished and ready. Make preparations for us there.’ 16 So the disciples set out and went to the city, and found everything as he had told them; they prepared the Passover meal. – Mark 14:12-16 New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition (NRSVACE)

Insight Two: Jesus Christ who came as the bridge linking us back to God – the olive branch that is the intermediary between man and God. Jesus is the lamb led to slaughter and it is His blood that is shed that is at the center of God’s divine plan. Again, over time we can see God’s never failing love, His unrelenting grace for the people that He loves. Think about the blood of the oxen shed during Moses’s day which served as the cleansing and purifying force which God had accepted. Now think of how much more clean and purified are we when covered with Jesus’s body and blood. No longer do we need to sacrifice animals, for the Lord is a loving and merciful God who took all this upon Himself for us. That my friends is the essence of this solemnity that we celebrate because now that yoke of our sins has now been lifted! Amen Allaluliah!

Reflection Two: God spoke – Moses took notes – man received. Now God became man walked among us, then God spoke again. How powerful is this idea? Well, it started two world religions, saved millions from sin, and gave every living person the opportunity to know God intimately. In both covenants, God was bringing His people closer to himself. In both instances, a sacrifice was required and laws had to be given for man to be molded into a better more purified version of himself. I find it ironic that Jesus during His ministry confronted the Pharisees on many different occasions and each time He showed a higher level of mastery over the first covenant laws than did they. In many ways, this goes to show the corruptness of Gods first set of laws by man given by Moses as the intermediary. So God became man to straighten the path back to Himself through the intermediary of His Son Jesus Christ – the High Preist for All Time! We give thanks because of this grace, love, and a symbol of Gods commitment that God the Father, Jesus the Son, and the Holy Spirit has shown to us.

Through Christ All Things Are Possible!

The Institution of the Lord’s Supper

22 While they were eating, he took a loaf of bread, and after blessing it he broke it, gave it to them, and said, ‘Take; this is my body.’ 23 Then he took a cup, and after giving thanks he gave it to them, and all of them drank from it. 24 He said to them, ‘This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many. 25 Truly I tell you, I will never again drink of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.’ – Mark 14:22-26 (NRSVACE)

Reflection Two Cont: So now instead of the flesh of animals that had been sacrificed we have Jesus – the bread of life, ‘Take; this is my body.’ Instead of the blood of animals, we now have the blood of Christ,This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many.’ In this Jesus concentrates his disciples as the new priesthood – spelling the fall of the Pharisees and giving rise to our modern day Papacy starting with Saint Peter. In this Jesus is the more perfect mediator, delivering a more perfect covenant. – Hebrews 8:6-8 (NRSVACE)

During the institution of the new covenant throughout His ministry, Jesus makes clear God’s new commandment, 34 I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples if you have love for one another.’ – John 13:34-35 (NRSVACE)

What Jesus Becomes:

Jesus gives purpose to the New Covenant

You’re the Witnesses

44 Then Jesus said, “Everything I told you while I was with you comes to this: All the things written about me in the Law of Moses, in the Prophets, and in the Psalms have to be fulfilled.” 45-49 He went on to open their understanding of the Word of God, showing them how to read their Bibles this way. He said, “You can see now how it is written that the Messiah suffers, rises from the dead on the third day, and then a total life-change through the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed in his name to all nations—starting from here, from Jerusalem! You’re the first to hear and see it. You’re the witnesses. What comes next is very important: I am sending what my Father promised to you, so stay here in the city until he arrives, until you’re equipped with power from on high.” – Luke 24:44-49 The Message (MSG)

Final Thoughts: In the fulfillment of the scriptures Jesus hands it all over to man – like a teacher in the classroom who has given the instruction. Jesus sets the limits (The Rules), then models each concept (Guided Practice), then letting the students at it to do it themselves (The Release). This is how Jesus taught, instructing, modeling, then giving it over for man to emulate. Jesus serves ultimately as the perfect example of God’s grace and love and in that each Sunday we are given the opportunity to participate in His body and blood through the Holy Eucharist – Corpus Christi.

Amen

Let Us Pray

Young girl praying
Lauda Sion

The shorter form of the sequence

Lo! the angel’s food is given
To the pilgrim who has striven;
see the children’s bread from heaven,
which on dogs may not be spent.

Truth the ancient types fulfilling,
Isaac bound, a victim willing,
Paschal lamb, its lifeblood spilling,
manna to the fathers sent.

Very bread, good shepherd, tend us,
Jesu, of your love befriend us,
You refresh us, you defend us,
Your eternal goodness send us
In the land of life to see.

You who all things can and know,
Who on earth such food bestow,
Grant us with your saints, though lowest,
Where the heav’nly feast you show,
Fellow heirs and guests to be.

Amen. Alleluia.

NEED HELP OR ENCOURAGEMENT?

If you would like to receive ongoing encouragement, to help you stay focused, and/or need some guidance in where to look for motivational scriptures in the bible then feel free to email me at listeningfaithfullyblog@gmail.com with your request. Remember your never alone.

Amen, Alleluia!

May the Lord bless you, protect you from all evil and bring you to everlasting life.

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Saint Joseph, Pray for us.Sancte Ioseph – ‘ora pro nobis,’

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The Childlike Measure

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13 “And people were bringing children to him that he might touch them, but the disciples rebuked them. 14 When Jesus saw this he became indignant and said to them, ‘Let the children come to me; do not prevent them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 15 Amen, I say to you, whoever does not accept the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it.’ 16 Then he embraced them and blessed them, placing his hands on them”. ~ Mark 10:13-16 (NABRE) 

Essential Question

“Are we adults behaving like the little children Jesus blessed?”

 There are many measurements of how to live a Christian life. It seems to me that every page in the Old Testament is giving us moral laws to follow, and the New Testament is no exception. The many thousands of things written can feel at times overwhelming and confusing to most. History is littered with the many thousands of arguments that have arisen since Christ’s death and resurrection because of those words and beliefs that split the New Church into many different pieces each with their own ideas of what a Christian Life should look like to others. We have been arguing for centuries amongst ourselves and in those arguments, we find in our modern age of technology even more ways to be anti-Christian which is laced with temptations that lure us away from God. There is deception of all kinds in our churches and people who profit off those descriptions.  Our sins with each passing century grow ever higher and the smell of our human lies that are designed to allow us to live as we want, do as we will, and not as God would have us live, is simply continuing to mount against us in the halls of Heaven. Perhaps, that is what Jesus was alluding too when he saw the disciples pushing away the children?

Living in a Sinful World

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13 God will judge those outside. “Purge the evil person from your midst.” ~ 1 Corinthians 5:13 (NABRE)

In the twenty-first century of which we live, drama is the new law! Social Media is filled with people posting everything about their lives, even the most private accepts and problems they are facing. People are caught up in watching reality TV, they are exposed to sin that is changing our culture and beliefs. Examples of which I speak is “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” where everything from marital issues is perverted to modern fashion which influences and corrupts our children. Another Reality TV Series is “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette”, where everything about marriage and dating is glamorized and set in a make belief settings where it’s ok to date more than one person, have sex with more than one person and hold relationships with more than one person!  Another show which perverts marriage and is setting such a bad example for our children as it relates to relationships and marriage is “Sister Wives”. It’s all in the title! One man multiple wives! This lifestyle was prohibited by God thousands of years ago!  So when I say we are corrupting our own children, that this corruption is perverting their morals and the morals of their children who are not yet born, and this corruption will pervert children for thousands of generations to come, then I think it is no wonder or mystery of why our children have no chance at seeing the gates of Heaven! Sure, there will be a handful who will repent, I say a handful because frankly when calculating the billions of people on earth today verse those who want to be real Christians and truly believe in God solely is determined by how their parents brought them up, and how closely to the Bible where those morals linked. Thus, a handful of the world’s population of true believers is a much smaller group than those who see nothing wrong with the world and call themselves Christians!

The Reality of Respect

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18 “If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who will not obey the voice of his father or the voice of his mother, and, though they discipline him, will not listen to them, 19 then his father and his mother shall take hold of him and bring him out to the elders of his city at the gate of the place where he lives, 20 and they shall say to the elders of his city, ‘This our son is stubborn and rebellious; he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton and a drunkard.’ 21 Then all the men of the city shall stone him to death with stones. So you shall purge the evil from your midst, and all Israel shall hear, and fear.” ~ Deuteronomy 21:18-21 (NABRE)

Respect thy neighbor, respect thyself, respect the world and all of nature, respect others as you would have them respect you. Yes, I took out a few words and replaced them with the word respect, but isn’t that what our world has done with the sanctity of marriage, haven’t we for our own selfish purposes took out words that would hold us responsible for our actions and replaced them with words that make us feel better about our sin? New laws which are giving even the most conservative of Governors a reason to pause, siding with the heretics of this world so they can be reelected. The controversy which I speak is to those who want such perversion and say – HE/SHE bathrooms in public spaces are ok! There is no respect in how people relate to one another because we have taken God out of the equation! No man will fear man’s laws as much as he will that of God’s laws if they are taught in the manner they were written taken nothing out, even those parts that make us cringe! As a teacher in a Catholic School, a place where you would think is steeped in discipline and a healthy fear of God, but sadly no, for all the Nunes have gone and the Priests have not a clue of how children should be raised. Yes, the Bible is unchanged, but how we teach it has changed. Because of these things in our sinful world we find ourselves mired in sin and helpless in teaching respect.  Our children see TV, play Adult rated video games, parents treat their kids more like friends than their children, and the basic teaching of how to act in public has been forever torn apart! So, the next time you look at a rude child, one who mocks you, one who talks back, one who does hateful things to others, one who thinks they are smarter than you, or one who does stupid things just to see what would happen (DUMBASS THE MOVIE), then as an adult / parent  have only yourself to blame!  Education begins at home not in the school building! Laws that suppress educators from fulfilling their job requirements as it relates to teaching discipline, morality, respect, religion, self-worth, love, and forgiveness is the major culprits to green lighting sin in our society! Perhaps, this is what Jesus saw when the disciples rebuked the children?

The Commandments that Matter

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34″I give you a new commandment: ‘Love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another. 35 This is how all will know that you are my disciples if you have love for one another.'” ~ John 13:34-35

Respect and discipline are all part of living a Christian lifestyle. But Jesus commands us that everything stems from love, an innocent like love in the Lord.  From this agape love we find the path to faith and armed with faith we find the path to a disciplined, respectful, honorable, holy relationship with God the Father. From this point is it then possible to show love and respect to others, and teach these things which God has commanded parents to teach to their children. For this duty is a sacred and holy duty given to parents alone!

6 “Train the young in the way they should go; even when old, they will not veer from it.”~ Proverbs 22:6 (NABRE)

4 “Hear, O Israel!  The Lord is our God, the Lord alone!  Therefore, you shall love the Lord, your God, with your whole heart, and with your whole being, and with your whole strength. Take to heart these words which I command you today. Keep repeating them to your children. Recite them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you get up. Bind them on your arm as a sign and let them be as a pendant on your forehead. Write them on the doorposts of your houses and on your gates.” ~ Deuteronomy 6:4-9 (NABRE)

7 “Fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and discipline.” ~ Proverbs 1:7 (NABRE)

1 “Children, obey your parents [in the Lord], for this is right. 2 ‘Honor your father and mother.’ This is the first commandment with a promise, 3 ‘that it may go well with you and that you may have a long life on earth.’” ~ Ephesians 6:1-3 (NABRE)

23 “Whatever you do, do from the heart, as for the Lord and not for others, 24 knowing that you will receive from the Lord the due payment of the inheritance; be slaves of the Lord Christ. 25 For the wrongdoer will receive recompense for the wrong he committed, and there is no partiality.” ~ Colossians 3:23-25

3 “Certainly sons are a gift from the Lordthe fruit of the womb, a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the sons born in one’s youth. Blessed is the man who has filled his quiver with them. He will never be shamed for he will destroy his foes at the gate.” ~ Psalm 127:3-5 (NABRE)

13 So faith, hope, love remain, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” ~ 1 Corinthians 13:13 (NABRE)  

Wrap Up

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What we teach our children as parents is what our children will do when they are grown. “Be a role model. This can help you teach your children to appropriate behavior, self-control, responsibility, and accountability while increasing their self-esteem.” ~ American Humane Association, (Child Discipline) 

Don’t come to their rescue so easily, don’t rave about them so easily, rather show them leadership! Help your children make calculated risks, have many discussions on making decisions, tell them stories of your childhood so they may bond with you, don’t let your guilt keep you from being a good parent and from making the hard decision. By making those hard decisions you are giving them the proper example, like Jesus, did for the world on Calgary. Teach respect, love, kindness, forgiveness, and mercy and these things will come back to you and make you proud. Finally, become partners with your children’s teachers and follow their examples upholding their expertise within the realm of education. In all these things allow Jesus to be part of your children’s lives allowing them to know God their and your creator.

Amen,

My brothers and sisters, if you enjoyed this message today then I invite you to contact me directly at listeningfaithfullyblog@gmail.com. Let’s open a dialog and share the good news with each other.

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Reflection 4: Family of God – Saving Relationships

5 “Do not rebuke an older man harshly, but exhort him as if he were your father. Treat younger men as brothers, 2 older women as mothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity.” ~ 1 Timothy 5:1-2

Family is Everything

Family is everything.  Family is so important that it is the overriding topic God concerned Himself with in every inspired religious text known to man.  So if the creator of the universe viewed family as having such an important role in the lives of everyone of His creations and it plays such a heavy role to our salvation then why is there so many broken homes, broken children, broken marriages, and broken relationships?  By contrast we all should be family oriented, protecting our relationships be them, friends, family, and with God.  Our country if not the world is headed head-long into a relationship crisis, but more about that later. For now the question which underlines this reflection is extraordinarily simple, but never-the-less paramount to our role in this life as it was designed by God.  Could modern man have forgotten that our relationships are inexplicably linked to loyalty, love, and trust?

Families: a group of individuals living under one roof and usually under one head :Household (as defined in the Merriam Webster Dictionary – Found online @  http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/family

According to the standard dictionary the first meaning of the word family or families concerns the household.  This definition is loosely linked to individuals who live under the same roof, spending day and night together through thick and thin, through hardship and pleasant times alike.  This idea of a household is defined by the head of that household, it is a reflection of the policies which are in place that all members adhere too.  In this way the head of the household carry’s tremendous weight and influence with all the other members and to some degree they are subject to the rule of the head of the house for better or for worse.  It is interesting  that when breaking this word down under such a meaning we can see how stark our own families complex and in some regard dysfunction becomes clear, and the root of the problems or boon can be traced to a singular person within the family who wheal the most influence. Often times in our humanity we fight and cause strife with that one person in order to declare dominance or to prove ones worth or specific knowledge but by-in-large all families fight among  themselves and in the family of God we are given some specific guidelines to help ease and end our inner struggles.  Chief among all commands to people at large and to families is simply;

34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” ~ John 13:34-35

Here we see Jesus, the head of God’s household here on earth commands everyone to love one another, this is a direct reflection upon the kind of rule Jesus wishes to impose, and the world surly would recognise a member of Jesus’s household by how they love others.  Surely Jesus’s household then is one of peace and tranquility.  In practice fighting would be shunned, so would bulling, manipulating, and divisive tactics because people who love others could not sink to such depths for love holds us automatically to a higher standard, true love holds us accountable to our actions.  This also draws in a higher level of respect for each member of the family and all those out side the family unit or household.  In this context morality rules, the fight between good and evil is revealed, and evil is concurred.  So it goes without saying that when we submit to this command from Jesus and apply it to our lives it’s not surprising that our life is forever changed, as is our relationships within our family and household.  But Jesus did not stop there, he also commanded;

12 “In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets.” ~ Matthew 7:12

Jesus in His commands for the family used an all-inclusive word when he said, “In everything”, which no fancy expensive lawyer could argue the meaning whether implied, inferred, or stated boldly.  Jesus commanded us to treat others the same way you wish to be treated in every action, word, deed, and dealings you have with other people.  The awesome part of this command is simple physiology; no one wants to be treated badly.  If every person adhered to this command there would be no fighting, no killing, no violence, no cussing, harassing,  and there would be no person who would treat another human being rudely or with disrespect because no one wants those things to be done to them.  Again we are lifted to a higher level of living and it again transforms every aspect of life.  Together, these two commands are all we need to end wars and skirmishes alike.  Not surprising these two commands also automatically endow loyalty, love, and trust. Therefore, a household ruled by these two commands found in John 13:34-35 and Matthew 7:12 is a household filled with God’s love and His divine blessing.

Above we have two extraordinary edicts that we as human-beings are to live by, they give us a way to build internal happiness and joy in our lives through the members of our household that can extend out to our external families and friends if we let it.  Likewise in the first scripture of this post we see in 1 Timothy 5:1-2 that God clearly wanted us to treat others outside the family unit with the same level of respect, love, and forgiveness. This edict also overlaps how we are to treat those members of our family which we do not see as often or spend as much time with, but again Timothy extended the reach of this by including old men, old women, young men and young women. These people do not need to be part of your family at all therefore by logic we are to treat everyone as if they where part of your family.  Because in reality we are all part of Gods family and therefore in the eyes of God we are all brothers and sisters in Christ.

Families: a group of persons of common ancestry :  clan (as defined in the Merriam Webster Dictionary – Found online @  http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/family

In this second definition of family we find the main focus within small groups of people who identify themselves within a specific population. This meaning can also encompass words like tribe or kin.  Most specifically the word clans deal with traditional kinship groups sharing a common surname and heritage and existing in a lineage based society prior to the 17th century, where as the word tribes are more indicative of  a social group existing before the development of, or outside of, states. Many anthropologists used the term tribal society to refer to societies organized largely on the basis of kinship. The common thread within this definition of family is found in the word “kinship”, which is a word that denotes a people who may or may not be members of the same family but cooperate for the benefit of all members of the group, tribe, or clan.  In these organizations men and women intermingle with a set rule or law that resembles closely to the aforementioned commands of Jesus.  The most striking aspect of this could be found within the one particular christian teaching that also finds it’s roots within the Jewish faith;

Q77 “Jesus Explained to His disciples, “If a companion does something wrong to you, go to the person and point this out. But do it privately. If your friend listens and says, ‘I’, sorry,’ forgive and your bond will be strengthened.” “But how often must I forgive the same person?” asked one of his disciples. “Not just seven times, but seventy-seven times.”

Most clans and tribes had a means for two people within the tribe to settle their differences most often privately.  Indeed this made the members of the specific tribes or clans grow closer and in the harshest of times the treads of unity ran so deep that it was not uncommon for all the members to support a single person or family within the group that faced difficulty from either internal  or external forces, and all members of the clan or tribe took this struggle personally, rallying to the aid of the one standing united; not ever leaving the one family to their fate.  Like bee’s you attack one then expect the whole hive to chase you down.  However, the root cause of this closeness within the tribal culture is in how they dealt with internal conflict and forgiveness played a huge part of that internal bond.  Thus, we see if applied properly deep strife can be overcome within the family unit, as it was within tribal societies, and or clans both of which viewed themselves as a larger family extended out beyond the immediate family.  In this manner we all should protect our families, safeguard them from the outside world much like the tribes of the Americas or the Clans of Ireland.  Find ways to forgive your family members in the exact manner Jesus described in Q77 and do this as instructed in Matthew 7:12, “In everything”, you do, linked to John 13:34-35, “love one another.” The family that loves reflects the blessing of God and the family that protects it’s members is a family that God loves greatly.

Strengthening Families Spiritually

I could never write the meaning of the goal our God endows us all with in the area of strengthening our families spiritually, the responsibilities God placed at every persons feet, especially fathers and mothers alike, than that of  , Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, who spoke on this topic so eloquently. See below;

Amen,

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Brian Keith

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Brian Keith

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