First Reading: 1 Kg 11:4-13
Psalm: Ps 106:3-4, 35-36, 37 and 40
Gospel: Mk 7:24-30
God is at work in the hearts of all men and women, not just those
who are Christian. Look at the Gospel. True to his intention, Mark
was a non-Jew demonstrating what it means to have faith. A very
persistent woman who wants her daughter to be healed confronts
Jesus. She is so persistent that Jesus gives in to her and fulfills
her desire. The most amazing thing is that she is a pagan. How could
she possibly know who Jesus is, let alone have faith in him?
The Church in it is theology of conversion and evangelization tells
us that even before people hear the Gospel, the Holy Spirit is at
work in their hearts preparing them for this very event. The Second
Vatican Council also affirms that there are elements of the truth at
work in all cultures and religions and that the Church affirms and
encourages these aspects of them. St. Paul writes about our ability
to know and come to believe in God through the wonder and glory of
creation, even without specifically hearing the Gospel proclaimed.
The scriptures tell us that the Lord works with people who are
humble and obedient to him and his ways. If we fail to live
according to God’s word, his blessings may well pass from us to
others, just as Paul explains his proclaiming the Gospel to the
Gentiles because the Jews would not listen to him.
If anything, we should be awed by the responsibility we bear as
Catholics. The fullness of the truth necessary for salvation
subsists within the Catholic Church. This means that we have a duty
and a responsibility to live out this truth to the full and, as
such, to be a beacon light lighting up for all peoples the path of
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