It is 6th May 2020.
The readings are from Acts 12:24-13:5; and the Gospel from John 12:44-50.
Mission never ends. A missionary could die,but not, the mission that is entrusted in him. What we have dealt with until now , is only the tip of the iceberg. So much yet is to be accomplished in reaching out to those in need. On July 11th 2019, Holy Father Francis urged us to embrace, “a church that sees itself as missionary through and through—always going out, reaching out to the margins. Such a church is not overly concerned with its identity nor with the past. Rather, such a church lives and breathes a “culture of encounter.” What we have in the first reading is the first missionary journey of Saul. Returning from the mission in Antioch, they remembered to bring relief supplies for the brothers and sisters who were in famine in Jerusalem. Saul and Barnabas were prompted by the Holy spirit to embark a venture into the lands of non-Jews even though in principle they began from Jews. Charisms are brought out by the Holy Spirit as per the need of the Church and not for the fame of the missionary. Prophecies and teaching are the charisms mostly used by the early missionaries. We are all on a mission during this pandemic not for a conversion of heart alone but to have a loving and caring conversation with someone in prayer, fasting and by doing good work. Every little drop of charity is noticed by God. Without charity there is no Church and community. God counts on all of us to reach out the unreachable, the unapproachable and the vulnerable people in our community. Leading people to the light of Christ from the dungeon of fear, anxiety and uncertainties is the need of the hour. Prayer combined with fasting allows us to listen to the plans and the vision of God for the suffering humanity. Ad Gentes, no. 6 teaches us, “The proper purpose of this missionary activity is evangelization.” In the Gospel, Jesus invites us to continue the mission of bringing light and love to the world without passing judgement on others. We come to the end of the book of signs (chapters 1-12) through which we know who Jesus is and what is His mission. The call to believe in Jesus is summarized through the seven signs. To believe Jesus means to believe God. Jesus, the Eternal Word of the Father offers eternal life for those who obey His Word. The mission of Jesus is accomplished in His healing evangelization and exaltation on the Cross. The missionary outreach without adequate charity will not bring anyone closer to evangelization. The Church as a whole needs to be prophetic in order to be missionary. As the Father gave the Son out of love to save us all, so we need to give ourselves to the community through our faith in Jesus. We need to think about the ways and means by which we contribute to the well-being of the community. The mission still continues in us, through us and with us. May God bless you.