14th Week in Ord. Time, Thursday – 7th July 2022 — Gospel: Mt 10,7-15
Gifts of Being in Relationship
Jesus advices his apostles then and now, “give what you have received, and trust that God will take care of you.” At the start of the mission, Jesus has already given to his disciples so much, above and beyond what they could ever have expected. They have been gifted by their relationship with Jesus. Now Jesus sends them forth to share with others the gifts they have received from him, so that others can be gifted in a similar way. They are not to expect to be paid by those to whom they minister. They have already received greater gifts than anyone else could give. In their journey, they are to give up money, travelling accessories, and extra clothes. As they leave home, they are to rely on God’s providence. As they share the Good News of Jesus, God will provide for them. They need only to trust in God and the power of God’s word.
14th Week in Ord. Time, Wednesday – 6th July 2022 — Gospel: Mt 10,1-7
Do not Go …but Go…
Jesus chose the twelve apostles and empowered them with healing and preaching abilities. He shared with them the authority to proclaim the Good News with others. He seemed to have a very specific plan for the apostles’ mission. At the beginning of their ministry, Jesus told them where to go and not to go. They were first sent to their own people, the people of Israel. For the disciples, “lost sheep of Israel” meant, to go first to those who are closest, to their families, friends and neighbours. The statement of Jesus to “go nowhere among the Gentiles” (10,5b) might seem harsh. But historically they were pagans, who worshiped false gods and Samaritans, who differed with the Jews on a number of religious issues. However, it must be kept in mind that the disciples were reluctant to go to non-Jews even after the resurrection. And it took considerable time for the early Church to realize that it had a universal mission. As baptized members of Christ’s mystical body, we all have a realm in which we evangelize. We must discern through prayer where “to go and not to go,” to fulfill our particular vocation as missionary disciples in the world. If Jesus strategized in order to bring about the most efficacious plan for establishing his kingdom, should we not also be wise and prudent disciples?