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Browsing Reflections Archive

January 31, 2022

Daily Reflection for Monday, January 31, 2022

Peace and Blessings, Friends and Parishioners,

We encourage you to reflect on Monday’s readings at this link:
http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/013122.cfm

If you prefer to use your own Bible, the readings are:
First Reading:  2 Samuel 15:13-14, 30; 16:5-13
Responsorial: Psalm 3:2-7
Gospel: Mark 5:1-20
Our reflection on Monday’s readings:

It was a blustery evening as office workers spilled out of their businesses. They were leaving early due to an ominous weather report of heavy snow’s arriving within the hour, changing the bitter icy sleet into a blizzard. Even the homeless gathered their few belongings and checked to see if their spots to spend the night were still not taken. The shelters had been crowded for days, maybe more. Disheartened, he chose a place near an alley entrance. He hunched down into a corner, pulled his ragged coat and blanket up around his chin and started his routine of asking for a bit of help. Actually, his choice was not the best one.

Gangs would loiter in the same area and steal the few coins that he had collected. He watched any number of people go by without even looking at him. He overheard some say, "This looks so bad for the city; no wonder crime is going up.”

One of the office workers did notice the homeless man as she approached the bus line. Responding to his request, she reached into her pocket checking for change to give him. All she could find were some small coins and a five-dollar bill. If she gave him the bill she would need to hire a cab or ask a friend to give her a ride. It was a dilemma either way. "Oh well,” she rationalized, “I don't have enough to share today, but I'll probably see you tomorrow.” The next day he was gone … a missed chance to help.

In today’s gospel, a man was possessed by Legion, a strong group of demons. The unfortunate man spent his days ostracized from his family and community—screaming, throwing dirt and stones, chained and shackled. But Jesus approached the distraught man and took pity on him. He ordered the demons to leave him and to enter a large herd of swine which ran into the sea and drowned. To the amazement of the crowd, the man returned to his normal state of mind. They had been so quick to judge him as a worthless madman. Jesus proved them wrong.

How might this gospel prompt us to confront the demons that persist in our own personalities— gossip, lying, selfishness, neglect, and more? Though we may not see the chains and shackles, their presence can still continue in our lives and defeat us.

How might this gospel prompt us to alter our perceptions of the homeless and disadvantaged? What can you do to help them as Jesus did?

Blessings,  Ann Hill

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