Jesus appeared to the Eleven and said to them:
“Go into the whole world
and proclaim the Gospel to every creature. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved;
whoever does not believe will be condemned.
These signs will accompany those who believe:
in my name they will drive out demons,
they will speak new languages.
They will pick up serpents with their hands,
and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not harm them.
They will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
Then the Lord Jesus, after he spoke to them,
was taken up into heaven
and took his seat at the right hand of God.
But they went forth and preached everywhere,
while the Lord worked with them
and confirmed the word through accompanying signs.
As we celebrate the life of St. Mark today, I cannot help but feel a connection to him through the call to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That is the beauty of these 2000 years of Church history. Although there have been rough times in the Church, we can trace our lineage back to the first Apostles of Jesus Christ.
And to this day, the promise of St. Mark in the Gospel today is true. Those who believe are given gifts of the Holy Spirit to do miracles in Jesus’ name. Demons are driven out, sick will recover, the blind will see and the lame will walk.
I have been witness to all of these things and can testify that Jesus is alive and well. His Holy Spirit is active in our lives and miracles happen on a daily basis. And as a witness to these miracles I cannot help but to preach and teach the faith handed down to us through the apostles, martyrs and saints.
What is my responsibility in this? Each one of us is called to be a witness to the power of the resurrection in our own lives. We are all called, like Mark, to go forth and preach everywhere, some by words, others by deeds, and others through prayer… We each have a mission given to us by God to share the hope that we have in Jesus – that this life is not the end, but that there is a new life and resurrection for all who believe.
St. Mark was martyred for this preaching. He was warned not to speak the name of Jesus again, yet he couldn’t hold it in. And he gave his very life blood for Jesus.
What are we willing to do?
Where is the Lord calling us?
What am I willing to sacrifice for Jesus and the Gospel?
Have a blessed day!