Cycle B Book 3
Today, in our Gospel reading, Saint Mark continues his story about the first days of the Jesus’ public life. Mark tells us that Our Lord preached in the synagogues and that upon leaving the synagogues he drove out many demons. One day, after preaching in the synagogue in Capernaum, the town in which Simon Peter and Andrew lived, Jesus decided to visit their home together with James and John. When he arrived, Jesus was told that Simon Peter’s mother-in-law was sick with a fever. Jesus immediately decided to cure her. That was how Jesus’ miracles occurred. He saw the faith of the people who wanted to be cured and he cured them. Jesus approached Simon Peter’s mother-in-law, grasped her hand, and she was cured. She immediately got out of bed and began to serve Jesus. This was the way she had of showing that she was thankful for having been cured.
After learning of this occurrence, the townspeople spread the news of the Lord’s miracles. The news went from home to home and soon the entire population of the town crowded around the door of the house. From the surrounding area, people brought all who were sick or possessed by demons. And Jesus cured those who came to him in faith. The next day, before dawn, Jesus went off to a deserted place where he prayed. Jesus was praying when the apostles arrived to tell him that everyone was looking for him. People who wanted to be cured continued to arrive. But instead of returning to town, Jesus said to the apostles, “Let us go on to the nearby villages that I may preach there also. For this purpose I have come.” You see, Our Lord’s true mission was to evangelize, to announce to all of humanity the Good News of the love that God has for all human beings
Saint Paul invites us, in the Second Reading, to follow the example of the Lord, to evangelize. The true mission of all Christians is to proclaim the Gospel to a world that needs to hear the Word of God. Saint Paul said to the Christians of Corinth: that for him, preaching was an obligation. He did not do it for his own glory or to become rich. He did not even start to do it on his own initiative. He had been given a task to do: to be a missionary of the Word of God, to “become all thing to all” so that he could “save at least some.” Saint Paul did not do this without problems. But, despite the difficulties, he continued to announce the Gospel; he continued on the mission that he had been given. If we want to do the same, we have to do as Saint Paul did.
We all know many bishops, priests and deacons who, like Saint Paul, in their preaching, and in their lives, give us a good example of how to be followers of Christ. They sometimes have difficulties in their own personal lives. Yet they continue to follow the vocation that the Lord has given them. Yet, all that they do is share in the same mission that all Christians have. It is a mission that does not end when we walk out of the doors of this church after Sunday Mass. It continues. You see, at Baptism, all Christians received the same mission: to evangelize within the boundaries of our own lives. Every day... whether at school, at work, or in the home... with our words, our example and our way of life... we are obliged to show that we are Christians, that we follow Christ, and that, because we follow Christ, we constantly fight against evil and injustice in this world.
Let us ask the Blessed Virgin Mary
to help us to be faithful to the mission that God has given us, just
as she was. And let us thank God for having called us to carry it
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