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A team of 200 priests comment on daily Gospel

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Liturgical day: December 3rd: Saint Francis Xavier, Priest

Gospel text (Mk 16,15-20): Jesus appeared to the Eleven and said to 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».

So then, after speaking to them, the Lord Jesus was taken up into heaven and took his place at the right hand of God. The Eleven went forth and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the message by the signs that accompanied them.

«In my Name they will speak new languages; they will lay their hands on the sick and they will be healed»

Fr. Eduard MARTÍNEZ Quinto
(Mirasol, Barcelona, Spain)

Today we contemplate the last words of Jesus before returning to the Father. It is the moment before the Ascension. Therefore those are the last words that the apostles will hear of Jesus Christ in person.

Last words of a person before leaving for another place are so important! They are stored in a preferred place of the heart. Even more so when that person is God Himself becoming man, coming to the world and surrendering himself to death, to free us from evil, sin and from death itself, giving us Life for his Resurrection. How important are those words! Important for who says them: God Himself. Important for his message: the Gospel. Important by the recipient: the whole world.

How well understood these words St. Francis Xavier! This great missionary traveled great distances in India, Japan and other nations, with his heart burning with missionary enthusiasm. Faithfully fulfilling the command of Jesus, he experienced the signs that will accompany his true apostles, as Christ says: “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” (Mk 16, 17-18).

Indeed, his preaching and testimony was accompanied by numerous healings of the sick. Crowds also approached him to be baptized. Sometimes, at night, he could not move his right hand because of the pain, because he had spent the whole day baptizing. In addition, along with many difficulties, he had to learn new languages. What the Gospel tells us today is thus fulfilled.

Through Baptism you and I also receive that message from Jesus that makes us messengers of God, missionary apostles, bearers of the Good News. Keep in your heart the words of Jesus and go without fear on adventure taking the Gospel everywhere.