I am with you always until the end of this world - Jesus (Matthew 28:20).

Preach the Word in season and out of season reproving, rebuking or advising always with patience and providing instructions (2 Timothy 4:2).

Do not fear, Mary, for God has looked kindly on you (Luke 1:30).

Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly. - G. K. Chesterton

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Saturday, September 26, 2015

Reflection for Sunday September 27, Twenty-sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time; Mark 9:38-43, 45, 47-48

Gospel: Mark 9:38-43, 45, 47-48
At that time, John said to Jesus, "Teacher, we saw someone driving out demons in your name, and we tried to prevent him because he does not follow us." Jesus replied, "Do not prevent him. There is no one who performs a mighty deed in my name who can at the same time speak ill of me. For whoever is not against us is for us. Anyone who gives you a cup of water to drink because you belong to Christ, amen, I say to you, will surely not lose his reward.

"Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him if a great millstone were put around his neck and he were thrown into the sea. If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life maimed than with two hands to go into Gehenna, into the unquenchable fire. And if your foot causes you to sin, cut if off. It is better for you to enter into life crippled than with two feet to be thrown into Gehenna. And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. Better for you to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into Gehenna, where 'their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.
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Do you sometimes have a feeling of superiority over other religions because you are a member of the Roman Catholic Church? The Catholic faith is the universally recognized dominant faith in the world. It traces its foundation to Jesus (Matthew 16:18).

 It is present in almost all parts of the world. It’s a sovereign nation and recognized by the United Nations as a sovereign country. It has its own ambassadors in almost all nations, when the Pope speaks the whole world listens. In other words the Catholic Church is very powerful.

Being Catholic I sometimes succumb to this feeling of superiority over other religions. Who wouldn’t have a feeling of superiority when your faith is founded by Jesus? When your leader is listened to by the most powerful and influential leaders of this world?

But should I have this superiority or arrogant mindset?  

In the gospel, a man who doesn’t belong to the group of Jesus was casting out demons using His name. John saw this man, thus he tried to prevent the man from using the name of Jesus (Mark 9:38). However, Jesus told John: Do not prevent him, let him continue using my name for no one who is using my name will speak ill of me (Mark 9:39).

Was John feeling superior when he tried to prevent him from using the name of Jesus? Yes, John also has that superiority feeling! Why did John have that feeling of superiority? Because he was with Jesus and he felt that his group has the sole possession of Jesus? But Jesus abhorred John’s display of arrogance. So Jesus rebuked him to send a message to John that they don’t have a monopoly of his name.     

Jesus did not want to become an exclusive property of anyone even by those who are very close to Him. As far as Jesus is concerned, He is a property of everybody!  And for as long as it’s for a noble purpose anyone can use His name anytime.

Nobody even those who are very close to Him have the right to feel superior over anybody. The more that you are close to Jesus the more that you should become humble, loving and tolerant. – Marino J. Dasmarinas 

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