Saturday of the 3e week of ordinary time (Mk 4, 35-41)
The story of the calming storm challenges us as vividly as Jesus snubbing his disciples. Taken in the violence of the wind, they are afraid and indignant at the indifference of the Master. It is sometimes the same for us, when trials frighten us and we seek in vain to understand their origin and outcome: question of God’s silence, which discourages some and turns others away…
But Jesus responds in two ways to the fear of his disciples. By an effective injunction: he silences the storm. By a question, a “why”, like those we throw at God when the burden is too heavy, when our hearts are closed to the grace of the Father… “Why are you so fearful? Don’t you have faith yet? » (Mk 4, 40). The Word of God sheds light on this question of faith by presenting today two witnesses seized by the Lord and who believed in his promise: Abraham, our father in faith (1D reading), and Zacharie (Song, “Benedictus” sung every morning at the Office of Lauds). Their faith is total trust in God as they have encountered him, recognized him, acting in their lives.
On this day when the Church celebrates the memory of Saint Thomas Aquinas, let us take stock of our attachment to Christ, certain that “Man’s reason is neither annihilated nor humiliated when it gives its assent to the content of faith; this is always achieved by a free and conscious choice” (St John Paul II, Encyclical Fides and ratio § 43).
Other texts : Heb 11, 1-2.8-19; CtLc 1, 69-75.
Monday of the 4e ordinary week of ordinary time (Mark 5, 1-20)
This episode of the Gospel strikes because of its staging: a possessed, a “legion” spirit, a herd of pigs, a cliff, people’s fear. So there is this possessed person who inhabits tombs, places of impurity and death. He does not speak but shouts and he is possessed by a diabolical force… So what is human in him? Jesus, by challenging him and driving out the evil spirit, restores him to his humanity: the man is now seated, dressed, reasonable. Jesus gave him back his human dignity.
That a man is returned to his humanity upsets the course of things. Some even lose their herds there. We then observe two attitudes among the witnesses; on the one hand the fear of those people who keep Jesus away, because he has turned their world upside down; on the other hand, this man’s desire to follow Jesus. But Jesus offers him another way, that of witnessing to his own: “Go home to your loved ones and tell them all that the Lord has done for you in his mercy. » This pagan then becomes the first to announce in pagan territory what Jesus is doing. It is an invitation made to us: look first at how Christ restores us to our humanity, frees us from the “inhuman” within us, an invitation to participate with others in everything that restores humanity to our brothers and sisters. Didn’t Jesus come so that human beings “may have life to the full” (Jn 10,10)?
Christophe Roucou (French Mission)
Other texts: Heb 11, 32-40; PS 30.