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Monday, April 25, 2005

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St. Mark

1 Peter 5:5-14
Psalm 89:2-3, 6-7, 16-17
Mark 16:15-20

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mark-eting the gospel

"Signs like this will accompany those who have professed their faith: they will use My name to expel demons, they will speak entirely new languages, they will be able to handle serpents, they will be able to drink deadly poison without harm, and the sick upon whom they lay their hands will recover." —Mark 16:17-18

By saying "signs like this," Jesus means that the signs and marvels He mentioned above are only a few of the signs He will work to accompany our proclamation of the gospel. There are many other ways that Jesus backs up those who spread His word.

When Jesus backs up our evangelization, we call this a "confirmation" of the word we have shared. "The Lord [continues] to work with" us as we witness to Him "and confirm the message through the signs" He chooses (Mk 16:20). A sales representative would be delighted if the president of her company confirmed her sales presentations to her clients. We who witness for Jesus have an even greater marketing confirmation service. Think of it! "The God of all grace...will Himself...confirm" us as we witness to Him (1 Pt 5:10).

The Lord is the same today as yesterday (Heb 13:8). As He has backed up St. Mark's preaching, so He will confirm our evangelization and preaching in the hearts of our listeners. If signs and confirmations of the Gospel are not commonplace today, one possible reason may be that we aren't spreading the gospel as the Lord wants us to. He will back us up. Therefore, "go into the whole world and proclaim the good news to all creation" (Mk 16:15).

Prayer:  Father, pour out Your love in my heart (Rm 5:5) so that I find delight in speaking of You (see Acts 4:20).

Promise:  "Cast all your cares upon Him because He cares for you." —1 Pt 5:7

Praise:  St. Mark spread the gospel far beyond his homeland and people by obeying the promptings of the Holy Spirit and writing it down for countless others to read.

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 12, 2004

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