Today is Friday the 3 December, the feast of St Francis Xavier SJ, in the first week of Advent.
The Gaudete ensemble, directed by Eamonn Dougan, sing ‘O Sapientia’, by Margaret Rizza.
Today's reading is from the Gospel of Mark.
And Jesus said to them, ‘Go into all the world and proclaim the good news to the whole creation. The one who believes and is baptized will be saved; but the one who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: by using my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes in their hands, and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.’
This passage starts with an invitation to “Go into all the world”. In one of his prayer exercises, St Ignatius invites you to join God as God gazes at the whole world. Start today ’s prayer by doing that. Imagine God looking at our world today. What do you think most catches his eye?
The passage goes on “Proclaim the good news”. What would that good news be, to this world that God is gazing at?
This good news is to be proclaimed “to the whole creation”. Not just people, but to animals, to plants, to the minerals that make up the earth, and to the stars. What good news might they be waiting to hear?
As the passage is read again, notice God ’s protective care of those who are sent out with this good news.
Speak to God now, either of the good news that you have heard, or of your own role as a messenger of that news.