Look at Jeremiah. He suffered for proclaiming his message of the coming Exile; and when it happened, he said it would last a long time. He was thrown into a cistern, filled not with water but only mud and left to die, called a traitor. Eventually he was rescued, but when Jerusalem was threatened, he was taken against his will to Egypt where he was rumored killed by own people.
Look at Jesus. He was rejected by his hometown and thought to be crazy by his own family. He was misunderstood by his apostles who were slow to get what he was preaching and were thinking their future would be filled with glory and power when he spoke of a coming kingdom. Jesus knew betrayal and his impending death was caused by the very ones to whom he wanted to give life.
Look at the Apostles (especially Paul who was shipwrecked, went hungry and was flogged who preached what Jesus taught them and were killed for doing so (except for John). Look at the martyrs in the early Church and today. Do you know there are more martyrs today than all those killed because of the Roman persecutions? Christians are suffering and are in torment in Africa, Central America, and the Mid and the Far East.
We are fortunate to live in a country where religious persecution doesn’t lead to death, but we also suffer, if we are true disciples. We live in a world where money and the power that comes with it are signs of success, where there are winners and “losers” (to quote a candidate for our presidency). It is a world that glorifies and applauds tyrants.
To be a Catholic Christians means swimming against the tide. Being committed to Christ means placing ourselves on the edge of our society. To be authentic Catholic Christians today entails being at odds with many of our fellow citizens on issues like capital punishment, immigration, care for the poor and the marginalized, affordable health care and affordable housing, the environment in our common home earth, respect for life as played out in our shoot first and question later in our wild West mentality, and other disputed matters. People are shot in driveby’s, road rage, or other slight slights. Where’s the respect for life there?
We don’t bask in suffering; we don’t welcome it. Actually, we fear it. But, suffering is real if we are faithful to the Gospel, the Good News, which bad news for anyone who’s not and is not convinced in God’s existence.
“Fear no one.” “Be not afraid.” That is easier said than done. But, remember to be like Jeremiah, trusting that “the Lord is with us, like a mighty champion.”
“Fear no one.” “Be not afraid.”
 It is “me” in the text.