While a cradle Catholic, there have been times in my life I have taken my faith for granted. It wasn't until college that my faith was not just the faith of my parents but it became personal for me.
I remember the first time I truly heard the Gospel message preached with fire and conviction that left me rattled to my bones in a way I had never known. Father Brendan, an Irish Pallottine, was the campus minister at a local community college I stumbled across. He talked about living in the power of the Holy Spirit in a way that was as normal as cream in your morning coffee. Conversations about experience of physical and emotional healings were not seen as crazy. Fr. Brendan spoke of spiritual gifts, charisms, and things like praying in tongues or praying over the sick as regular parts of the Christian life. The funny thing is, at the time, much of that was all very new to me.
Saint Mark's Gospel ends on an important note on what Jesus wanted His followers to do after He was gone, what Jesus describes is His call to everyday Christians. Saint Mark underlines the importance of proclaiming the good news to unbelievers with expectant faith and asking the Lord to accompany the preaching of the word with signs and wonders that confirm its truth and demonstrate its power. Physical and spiritual healings, laying hands on the sick, speaking in tongues or words of prophecy, and living in the power of the Holy Spirit were signs of God's presence working in the world back then and they can still be today. (Mark 16:15-20)
As women living in 2018, it is a reminder that those same things can still be part of how we live out our everyday faith, according to the gifts He gives us.
Where is the Holy Spirit calling you to go outside your comfort zone? Where are you being called to go deeper?
Patty Breen is a runner, full-time lay minister, and thinks old movies are the greatest thing since sliced bread. When not fundraising for World Youth Day, she is learning to find grace in all things. You can find out more about her here.