Pastor's Desk: Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Posted 28th January 2018 in Pastor's Desk

In today´s gospel we see Jesus at the beginning of his ministry.  He commences it in quite a dramatic way by driving out a demon. But what is most remembered from this text is the way he spoke to his audience.  We are told that the taught them with authority unlike their regular preachers.

There is a real sense of turning over a chapter in the Gospel today.  We have a new authentic voice who can speak with authority and bring healing to those in need. The message from Saint Mark is that something different is happening, there is a change of gear and a new direction.

In our lives we too can recall times when a new voice of authority entered our lives to encourage and inspire us.  This may have been a teacher, a sports coach, or perhaps a priest giving a retreat. Whatever the reason, their words caused us to sit up and to take notice and may have caused our lives to go off in a new way.  This, of course, may not have been a dramatic change, it may even have been a gradual one, but it was enough to cause us to think again about the decisions we have made and to consider doing things in a different way.

When I think back on voices of authority in my own life, I often recall nuns and priests who lived out the Christian life in a generous and life-giving way.  Many of them were missionaries who brought the word of God to far off places while others worked in pastoral ministry closer to home.  But if I want to try to put my finger on what caused them to stand out, it was the authority and confidence with which they went about their work. Some were teachers, others nurses or administrators, and some priests or brothers.  But what they all had in common was a belief in what they did, and it was clear when meeting them that the word of God resonated deeply with them.

Let us pray in the coming week that we may be inspired by authentic preachers and teachers who try to share the word of God with us and pray that Jesus may give us the courage and confidence to act on it in the different circumstances of our lives.

Deacon Gerard Reilly