Readings: Genesis 9:8-15; Psalm 25; 1 Peter 3:18-22; Mark 1:12-15

Forty days in the desert                                Forty days of Lent
Tempted by Satan                                         Tempted by today’s evils
Led by the Spirit                                             Led by the Spirit
Sent forth to proclaim the gospel           Sent out to minister to God’s creation

Will these forty days of Lent prepare me, as Jesus’ forty days in the desert prepared him, to proclaim the good news? Am I open to taking the time to experience God’s presence in spaces of quiet — to receive God’s graces of love, mercy and forgiveness? If I but open my heart, God speaks to me and encourages me to go forth and proclaim the good news to all of God’s creation.

Perhaps my prayer is my ministry to others, and so I pray.

Perhaps I can help to feed the hungry, visit the sick, tend to the dying or welcome the stranger.

The sick and dying, homeless, hungry and strangers are certainly among us. Will I stand in solidarity to welcome immigrants to our shores, to donate from my surplus to share with the hungry and homeless, so that they too can experience God’s love? Am I willing to stop and talk to the neighbor or stranger in need of a listening ear and a helping hand? Am I able to seek and accept help from another when I am in need? Are there ways that I can work to improve the environment and help to save our planet earth?

These are all outward signs that God loves us. Just as Jesus cared for God’s people when he walked the earth, so we are called today to share with others God’s word spoken to us in our prayer. Perhaps I cannot stand up and take action, but I can pray, or do whatever I am able to make my own small part of the world a better place. And for all those who are involved in active ministry, you bring God’s love to all you serve and meet each day.

Live as though
“This is the time of fulfillment.
The kingdom of God is at hand.
Repent and believe in the gospel.” (Mk. 1:15)
right here, right now, in our own time, on our own planet

–Sr. Maryellen Blumlein, SC

Sr. Maryellen BlumleinSister Maryellen, a former elementary and high school teacher and Archive Manager for the Congregation, is currently an adjunct professor of English at the College of Mount Saint Vincent.




Image: Christ tempted in the desert, James Tissot, c. 1836 – c.1902