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Monday, January 11, 2021

Reflection 2021-01-12 Tuesday First Week in Ordinary Time – St Marguerite Bourgeoys

Hebrews 2:5-12; Psalm 8; Mark 1:21-28
The First Reading tells us the exalted nature of humanity. We were created lower than the angels but God has crowned us with glory and honor, subjecting all things under our feet. The author continues: now in subjecting all things to them, God left nothing outside their control. We share in the dominion of Jesus Christ who was made lower than the angels now crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone. Jesus was raised in glory and honor because of his suffering of death. Sufferings are a necessary part of our lives and in the midst of suffering, we remember that Christ suffered death so he is now crowned with glory and honor. The ascension of Christ shows us what our lives will be when we have gone through our sufferings. This is also how we will be glorified: through our sufferings, because our sufferings are our share in the sufferings of Christ. If we share in his sufferings, then we will share in his dominion and glory and honor.
The Gospel shows us what the dominion of Christ look like. People were astounded at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority. Our words will have power just as the words of Christ have power and authority. Evil spirits fear and obey Jesus. When Jesus confronted the evil spirit, he commanded it to be silent and come out of the man. This is the dominion Jesus showed that we also have IF we are in Christ. A word of caution is we do not go around ordering evil spirits that work in other people. We do not speak to the evil spirits directly, because only the Bishop and whoever he authorizes can do this. But we do have authority over them within our sphere of authority, such as our own lives, our children, our home, our property and we can ask Jesus or the Blessed Mother, or St Joseph or any other saint to drive that evil spirit away from our lives.
More important is our battle against sin that clings to us. We have authority and dominion over it if we cling to God and trust him. Sufferings come to purify us of our sins because they teach us to cling to God more. When we trust God, he will give us the grace to conquer these sufferings because Jesus conquered his sufferings. The criteria though is we need to live in Christ, we need to share in the suffering of Christ.
St Marguerite Bourgeoys shows how we exercise dominion in our simple lives. She was born in France in 1620 and was invited to New France, now Quebec, Canada. She landed in Quebec City first and stayed with the Ursuline nuns. She arrived in Ville-Marie on November 16, 1653. Ville-Marie will later be known as Montreal. She organized people to build the first permanent church which later served as a school house. She later went back to France to recruit women to help her. She showed how to conquer the new land, not with force, but by looking after the spiritual needs of the people and also educating them.
Christians follow a king who does not rule by force, nor by oppressing his subjects. Our King has dominion over all creation and when we follow him, we too will have dominion over creation. Not by might, nor by power, but by the Spirit of the Lord, do we conquer all that confront us.
Lord, teach me to know how I can share in your dominion of creation. Let me realize it is not by might, nor by power, but by your Spirit that I conquer my sufferings. Let me realize the dignity you have given your children, and let me treat them with respect and care, to speak the Truth in love so they too may share in the dominion you have planned for them. St Marguerite Bourgeoys, pray that I may do what God has planned for me to do. Let me follow him in meekness and courage.

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