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January 25, 2022

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DG BookGospel: Mark 16:15-18
Then he told them, “Go out to the whole world and proclaim the Good News to all creation. The one who believes
and is baptized will be saved; the one who refuses to believe will be condemned. Signs like these will accompany

those who have believed: in my name they will cast out demons and speak new languages; they will pick up snakes,
and if they drink anything poisonous, they will be unharmed; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will be healed.”

 

Reflection:

 

Christians tend to think of Paul as one who rejected Jewish
faith and embraced Christianity. And Jews denounce him for the
same reason as well. However, Krister Stendahl, in his book
Paul Among Jews and Gentiles, observes that Paul was “called
rather than converted.” Born as a Jew, Paul remains and dies
a Jew. See how his testimony begins in today’s first reading:
“I am [not ‘was’] a Jew…” Before the “experience” he saw only
differences between peoples, and sought to eliminate the
‘other.’ After the “experience” he sees the continuity and oneness
of all, and seeks to build bridges. Thus, Paul’s conversion is truly
a vocation to live continuity and inclusiveness rather than
rejection of one for the other. The need of the world, and our
individual lives, is to arrive at such conversion that seeks to
build bridges rather than walls.

 

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