READING I: 2 Samuel 1:1-4, 11-12, 19, 23-27
RESPONSORIAL: Psalms 80:2-3, 5-7
GOSPEL: Mark 3:20-21
"It is the feast of a virgin--let us imitate her chastity. It is the feast of a martyr--let us offer our sacrifice." With these words St. Ambrose begins his sermon on the death of Agnes. Martyred about the year 300AD Agnes was only 12 years old but her dignity and fortitude going to her death caused her executioners to break down. As her executioners issued threats and promises, Agnes said, "It would be an insult to my spouse to think I would consent to you. He who chose me shall possess me."
In a world that is growing ever more anti-Christian we are going to be called in increasing circumstances to witness to God. While at times the witness may seem unimportant, it did not make sense for a 12 year old to be a martyr, we shall still be called upon to bear witness to the truth. This may be in simple ways at work or in public ways to our family and friends. The question for us is, shall we stand by God in all things?
Overcome evil with good (Rom 12:21) Day Four: Changed by the Lord’s Victory over Evil
This day takes us deeper into the struggles against evil. Victory in Christ is an overcoming of all that damages God’s creation, and keeps us apart from one another. In Jesus we are called to share in this new life, struggling with him against what is wrong in our world, with renewed confidence and with a delight in what is good. In our divisions we cannot be strong enough to overcome evil in our times. (source