Gospel: (Mark 6: 1-6) Jesus went to his own part of the country followed by his disciples. When the Sabbath came, he began to teach in the synagogue in a way that kept his audience amazed. They said: “Where did he get all this? What kind of wisdom is he endowed with? How is it that such miraculous deeds are accomplished by his hands? Isn’t this the carpenter, the son of Mary, a brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters our neighbors here?” They found him too much for them. Jesus’ response to all this was: “No prophet is without honor except in his native place, among his own kindred, and in his own house.” He could work no miracle there, apart from curing a few who were sick by laying hands on them, so much did their lack of faith distress him. He made the rounds of the neighboring villages instead, and spent his time teaching.
Reflection: “Where did this man get all this?” They saw but they didn’t believe. The challenge of this gospel is to look beyond our own knowledge of others preconditioned by what we think we know about them and listen to them, allow them to teach us about God and how to be faith-filled disciples. God does not very often visit us in the unusual and spectacular, hitting us over the head so that we don’t miss God’s message of salvation. Most often God visits us in the ordinary circumstances of our own lives through ordinary people we meet who are faithful as Jesus was to their own mission to make known the gospel. It is too easy to dismiss the events of this gospel reading as past history. After all, we like to think, if we had been there and seen those mighty deeds, we would have believed. Really? (Living Liturgy, p.168)
Vincentian Meditation: Had we but eyes of faith, we would see that each day we are being surprised by joy. We have come to take so much that is good in life for granted. Is not your call to serve the poor a surprise, seeing that so many others are so imprisoned in themselves that their hearts remain untouched by the sufferings of the poor whom you are serving? Your unselfish service of the poor is for the poor themselves a surprise. (McCullen, Deep Down Things, p. 378)
How has God visited you in the ordinary circumstances of your life?