Psalms: 8, 84
Gospel: Mark 3:31-4:9
Patristic Reading: An excerpt from a sermon of St. Leo the Great

Here are my mother and my brothers! 35Whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother.’ (Mark 3:35)

Y’know……I’m pretty lucky. I never was at odds with my parents when it came to my religion of choice. Even when I jumped the Roman ship to become Anglican, there was no real fuss.

Part of that easy transition I’m sure was having an awesome family 🙂 <3…..but I think the other part is that it is generally accepted now (at least in "Western" culture) that matters of faith are the result of personal decision and conviction.

The ancient world however was constructed in a completely different manner. The family unit was also the social unit. If the head of your family was wealthy, and had a job…..so did his kin. 99% of the time, religion was the common denominator between families and tribes. It determined who you could marry, how far you could advance up the social ladder, and helped each person to know what their role was in society and in the family unit.

For Jesus to say that his blood kin are not actually his brothers and sisters, father or mother is an incredibly controversial stance.

I sit here wondering……have their ever been times where you have felt forced to choose between those you love, and the faith that is in your heart??? If so, what are some of the deciding factors in determining which side wins out???

If–like me–you have never been in that position…..perhaps we are challenged to think of the things we are called to walk away from when we are called to the Christian way of living. What do you guys/gals think??? Leave a comment on this post and maybe we can get some discussion going. 🙂 +

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