Acts 4:13-21 / Mark 16:9-15
Faith is a gift from God. It is not something we can earn or acquire by our own efforts or resources. That is why it is called cardinal virtue. But how God grants this gift of faith and in what measure is somewhat a mystery because we are not granted in equal amount.
A person can read the whole Bible and the profound theological books and listen to the most persuasive preacher and yet do not have faith.
On the other hand a person can just come across an ordinary mundane experience and yet be converted, as in the case of St. Augustine and St. Ignatius of Loyola.
In the first reading, ordinary uneducated laymen like Peter and John were preaching about the resurrection of Christ. There was even proof of what they were saying in the person of the healed cripple. Yet, the elders and the scribes somehow did not believe them.
In the gospel, Mary Magdalene went to tell the disciples that Jesus had risen from the dead. But they refused to believe her. Well, it can be very difficult to believe that a person can rise from the dead, especially after being dead for three days. Much more the testimony of a woman was not accepted in male world.
The main phrase that runs through the readings is “did not believe”.
The gospel even mentioned that Jesus reproached His disciples for their incredulity and obstinacy for their refusal to believe in His resurrection.
As for ourselves, regardless of whether we have inherited the faith because of our parents or came to believe in the faith in our adult years, the challenge for us is to grow and deepen in our faith.
If faith is a gift from God, then we must treasure and nourish this gift with prayer and devotion.
We also must persist in our faith. That is one profound way of proclaiming our trust and faith in God.
St. Theresa of Lisiuex, pray for us
St. Theresa of Lisieux, pray for us