James 4:13-17
Mark 9:38:40


We live this week in the wonderful glow of the Feast of the Holy Spirit and the gifts and celebration that Pentecost brings. It seems appropriate that the readings today centre on the practicalities of Gospel living and indeed community living.

James gives wise advice to his community about living prudently, not only doing the right thing but discerning that the decisions we  make are made in the light of what God would want us to do. We all experienced the absolute disruption to our daily lives, that the Covid-19 epidemic brought. Suddenly, making plans for the future seemed difficult, almost impossible. The more creative folk had plan A, B and C, and the realisation that perhaps none of them would eventuate. In the  midst of that doing the right thing was what kept many people going. I think James would have approved.

In the same light, Mark has Jesus recognising that everyone can do good, no matter their level of faith, formation, education or standing in society. This attitude challenges those who insist on structures and authority above the goodness and generosity of ordinary people who reach out in love.

Today I am going to be alert to how much goodness there is in the world, no matter who it is, who is acting kindly or generously, out of love

Margaret Bentley is a Salesian Sister and is currently the Academic Manager at the English Language Studies for Pastoral Ministry (ELSPM) begun by the Passionists in 2014 to enable their students to learn English before continuing to the Novitiate or theological studies.