Thursday, 4th Week in Ordinary Time
“Jesus summoned the Twelve and began to send them out…”
Mark gives an account of the missionary venture of the Twelve. They are given specific directions on what to take with them on their journey and how to behave. Although they are given the power to drive out unclean spirits, it is quite clear that they can do this only by the authority of Jesus. In other words, it is Jesus who commissions and empowers them to participate in his ministry. (365 Day with the Lord – 2015)
The mission they are to carry out is a combination of words and deeds: preaching repentance, driving out demons, and healing the sick. This is in accord with the very first proclamation of Jesus: “The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the Gospel.” (Mark 1:15)
Since the presence of demons and the diminishment cause by illness are considered evidence of the power of evil in the world, people believe that exorcisms and healings are victories of God’s power breaking the bonds of evil. “The message of salvation that accompanies these wonders is testimony to the saving power of God.” (365 Day with the Lord – 2015)
Each one of us, by virtue of our baptism and confirmation, has been commissioned to announce the coming of God’s kingdom and to make it arrive for people. The Lord wants us to be his mission-partners.
‘Mission’ can mean many things. It can mean giving witness to the lordship of Jesus in our daily lives. Having a deep personal relationship with him… making others feel his loving presence through us. It can mean honoring, praising, and thanking God right where we are. Right in our home, in our neighborhood, in our assignment… right where we work and deal with others. It can mean bringing our family to know, to love and to serve the Lord. Putting Christ at the center of our family life, and making God’s will as the only consideration in our decision-making. It can mean taking care of the old, praying for the young, inspiring the uninspired, giving hope to the hopeless, promoting justice and peace, working for social transformation. And, of course, it can mean getting actively involved in the life and mission of the Church – particularly here in our parish.
Our mission is always some version of bringing the divine grace to others. It is the task of becoming a channel of his blessings, of becoming a conduit of the divine love to the world.