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Calling out of the unclean spirit

Listen to the Word In Mark’s Gospel account today, we hear proclaimed the work of Jesus teaching in the synagogue and of his power over unclean spirits. The people who heard him speak were convinced that he spoke with authority and then were witnesses to the calling out of the unclean spirit from within a person. All of this caused people to spread the word of who Jesus was. It was part of God’s plan that the people should come to know him – it was part of the plan for our salvation. It causes me to wonder about why the people thought he spoke with authority. Was it the sound of his voice? Was it the way he looked at them or the way he acted? Or might it have been that it was clear to them that he knew what he was talking about and that he went about living what he was preaching? Jesus talked the talk in his teaching, he also walked the walk, modeling for us complete dependence upon God his Father.

Jesus was a man of integrity who never waivered in his teaching of forgiveness, his faith in his Father, or in showing love to all people, especially the poor and outcast.

Today, Jesus continues to be with us in the WORD, for he is the WORD.

As we listen to Scripture being proclaimed, we must listen intently, we must take the parables and the words of Jesus into our hearts. The WORD needs to become what guides us in life. Being Christian in a secular world can at times be difficult. The world and all its rhetoric is loud and distracting. We must find a time and a place to quiet the resounding noise that we might be attentive to what God is saying to us.

In her wisdom, the Catholic Church set forth for all members an obligation to be present to that quiet among the chaos in requiring our attendance at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days. Yes, that obligation is presently removed, but the need to find that quiet is essential to our spiritual life, that we might keep God at the center of our lives.

The Church does not require attendance at Mass for God, the Church understands the need to deeply encourage us to draw closer to Jesus. As we attend Mass, we grow in faith, in hope and in love. We need the obligation, for without it, we will drift away!

So, in this time when the obligation to attend Mass has been lifted, for the good of all, how do you quiet the world enough to clearly hear the WORD of God? Whether attending a Mass in person or by livestream, our Church beckons you to stay close to Jesus. Take time this week to think about the gift we are given as we pray the Mass together with the whole of the Body of Christ.

And let us all reach out to others and encourage them to be with us. In this noisy, chaotic world, we can find peace and calm together, and we can share with others the

Good News of Jesus.

In hope,

Deb Rudolph

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