Mark 10:2-16 Or Mark 10:2-12
The gospel acclamation sets the tone for today’s readings. “If we love one another, God remains in us and [God’s] love is brought to perfection in us.”
In the first reading from Genesis, God creates humans and gives the man and woman to each other. “… the man said: ‘This one, at last, is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; this one shall be called ‘woman, for out of ‘her man’ this one has been taken. That is why a man leaves his father and mother and clings to his wife, and the two of them become one flesh.’” Out of God’s love humans are created and that love resides in both the man and the woman. God’s love is the basis for marriage. However, we know all too well in our time in history that the marriage bond between a man and a woman often ends in divorce. In fact, more than fifty percent of marriages fail.
In the gospel Jesus is very clear that marriage is to be a permanent commitment between the couple who freely choose to marry. Even with Jesus’ strong words, over time the Church, with understanding and compassion, has allowed for divorce when there is lack of freedom, when mental and physical violence is present, when infidelity or other serious barriers to the commitment are present. A sad result is that the innocent party can’t remarry in the church unless an annulment is obtained.
For those who are not married the gospel acclamation holds true in all human relationships as well. We believe that God’s love is present within us and we share that love with others who are in our life circle. We commit to being faithful and honest in our dealings with each other. We support each other in good times and in hard times.
The gospel ends with people bringing children to Jesus that he might touch them. Jesus tells the disciples that “… whoever does not accept the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it.”
Whether married or single we are called to be like children who are open, continually growing and simple in what we seek for ourselves and others. The response to the responsorial psalm is a good way to live this way. “May the Lord bless us all the days of our lives.”
What are your beliefs about commitment?
How do you share God’s love with others?