We have to love and honor one another, whatever our spiritual beliefs
Reflections on the readings for the Twenty-sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time (September 30, 2018): NM 11:25-29; PS 19:8,10,12-13,14; JAS 5:1-6; MK 9:38-43,45,47-48
MISSIO offers “Preaching Mission,” as a homily help, providing connections to mission from the readings of Sundays, Feast Days and Holy Days.
In the Gospel for today, Jesus shares several essential points about what it really means to be His disciple.
The first of them comes up when John tells Christ about a man who is driving out demons in His name. In resenting somebody who is not part of their group who presumes to work in Christ’s name, John shows arrogance and envy. But our Lord immediately stops His beloved disciple in his tracks, saying that the person casting out demons cannot be opposed to Him if he is performing these good deeds in His name. “Whoever is not against us is for us. Anyone who gives you a cup of water to drink because you belong to Christ, amen, I say to you, will surely not lose his reward” (Mark 9:40-41).
Jesus wants all who follow Him to be open to the movement of the Holy Spirit in other people. That means we need to respect our fellow Christians as well as people of other faiths. In living out – and sharing – our Catholic beliefs we must understand that the way and will of God is not always revealed to us. We have to speak and act with that same love and mercy our Lord gives to us – and expects us to offer our brothers and sisters, whoever they are and whatever they believe.