Sunday, January 28, 2018

“The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist…… “The second greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he is the good guy”

“Let us always remember… that the Adversary wants to keep us separated from God and therefore instills disappointment in our hearts when we do not see our apostolic commitment immediately rewarded. Every day the devil sows the seeds of pessimism and bitterness in our hearts. … Let us open ourselves to the breath of the Holy Spirit, who never ceases to sow seeds of hope and confidence.” - Pope Francis: Speech, 6/18/2013 

Gospel Text: (MK 1:21-28)

Then they came to Capernaum,
and on the sabbath Jesus entered the synagogue and taught.
The people were astonished at his teaching,
for he taught them as one having authority and not as the scribes.
In their synagogue was a man with an unclean spirit;
he cried out, "What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth?
Have you come to destroy us?
I know who you are—the Holy One of God!"
Jesus rebuked him and said,
"Quiet! Come out of him!"
The unclean spirit convulsed him and with a loud cry came out of him.
All were amazed and asked one another,
"What is this?
A new teaching with authority.
He commands even the unclean spirits and they obey him."
His fame spread everywhere throughout the whole region of Galilee.

Many times in our lives we are "possessed" by many things: without knowing it, we have been subtly enslaved by our senses, by our craving for wealth and material things, by our desire for power and influence. Like the man possessed by an unclean spirit in the Gospel reading, we have been "possessed" by the wrong things: we are in a state far from our original standing as adopted sons and daughters of God, dwelling places of the Holy Spirit. It is in this context that Jesus frees us from such possession: he exorcises the evil in us so that only what is Godly remains.

We ask ourselves, at this point in our lives, what have subtly and perhaps unknowingly enslaved and possessed us and hold us captive and not free?

And we ask Jesus to deliver us from these……!

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