Mark continues in his relentless way, and now we are sent out in haste - travelling light, to add speed. Us? Yes, you and I. We were we not baptised as Priest, Prophet and King? As prophets we are set the task of taking the good news out into our world, this is the duty of us all. The same message came to us last Sunday, in a less 'Markian' and certainly more expansive manner, Luke 4:21-30 and Jeremiah 1:4-5,17-19, both urging us to be prepared to use the gifts we have been given. The good news, that we have been entrusted with, is not for just you and I - it is for the world. Perhaps there is some comfort, and certainly wisdom, in the message from St Francis - "preach the word all the time, when necessary, use words". Well - actually, he did not say quite that, his words were:
“Calling together the six brothers, Saint Francis, since he was full of the grace of the Holy Spirit, predicted to them what was about to happen. “Dearest brothers,” he said, “let us consider our vocation, to which God has mercifully called us, not only for our own good, but for the salvation of many. We are to go throughout the world, encouraging everyone, more by deed than by word, to do penance for their sins and to recall the commandments of God. Do not be afraid that you seem few and uneducated. With confidence, simply proclaim penance, trusting in the Lord, who conquered the world. Because by his Spirit, He is speaking through and in you, encouraging everyone to be converted to him and to observe his commandments”
In this day and age travelling light, fast, wearing no tunic and just sandals on our feet, unless we are Carmelite Friars, would brand us something of a 'new age' or 'hippy' type - but nevertheless we are sent. When we meet any kind of opposition to our message - as indeed we will - we are not to persist, but to move on. There will be others willing to hear. Remember from yesterday's Gospel we do need to preserve our joy in the Lords presence, and this joy will bring light into our world.