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Living the Gospel – May 17, 2020

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We have 3 very powerful readings today, but the second reading – 1 Peter 3:15-18 – was the one that stood out to me the most. It is a verse I have read and heard many times but it seems very fitting in the chaos/”new normal” we are all experiencing right now. The first thing that stuck out is “Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope.” Many people will focus in on the first part of this statement which is about evangelization, but it was actually the second part of the statement that grabbed me – for a reason for your hope. This assumes we have hope in our lives, so much so that others will ask us about it. I think in the times we are currently living in, the hope in our lives should shine more than ever. Think of your hope as a flashlight. When the world around us is all sunny and bright and things are going well for everyone, our flashlight is on but it is hardly noticeable in the bright sunshine. However, when darkness comes, the storms roll in and the power goes out, that same flashlight is a radiant beam shining forth from the darkness. But that assumes our flashlight is on (we are truly hopeful because our destiny lies in Christ, not in our circumstances) and we have good batteries (we have a relationship with the risen Christ and spend time each day in prayer to recharge the batteries). Regardless of our circumstances, our personal ups and downs, or the widespread ups and downs that are thrust upon us from the world, if our hope remains in the unmovable rock of God, we can have hope in any situation. We know that this world is temporary, and that Jesus has prepared a room for us in his father’s house. So, I encourage you to have hope. Charge those batteries every day through prayer (the Rosary is a great start), reading scripture, and fellowship (virtual meetings and telephone calls work!). Then turn that flashlight on and be a beacon of light in the midst of this darkness, let the light of Christ shine through you so much so that those around you (or those that read your social media posts) will ask you the reason for YOUR hope.

Pax Christi,

John Mihalko