Missionary Weekly Reflection
Fourteenth Sunday of Ordinary Time, 7 July 2019
Isaiah 66:10-14c; Ps. 66:1-3a, 4-5, 6-7a, 16, 20; Gal. 6:14-18; Luk. 10:1-12, 17-20
Luke is the “Gospel of preaching”. The Evangelist Luke strongly emphasized his word and preaching. Today’s Gospel nicely shows the mission pattern and preaching of the disciples. First, 70 disciples were sent two by two (verse 1). They were another group of Jesus’ disciples, apart from His 12 closest followers. The number of 70 can be real or just a symbol: it refers to the number of missionaries in the early church, in the era of Luke. The number of 70 is also in accordance with the number of ethnic groups in the world, according to Genesis 10. Mission and preaching of the church is addressed to all nations, in every home and city. The mission is carried out together, not as an adventure and personal experiment, in order not to be claimed as a personal achievement. Being sent two by two also emphasizes the aspect of cooperation and mutual supporting among the preachers. By this way, unfair competition among them can be avoided. Being sent two by two is also meant for legality of the mission and preaching. This is according to clause of the Torah: testimony from two witnesses will confirm the testimony without doubt (Deuteronomy 19:15).
Second, the core of mission and preaching of the disciples is to present “shalom” peace that comes from God Himself. The peace is not mere words, but a real action. They preach and cure various disease (verse 9). That is God’s Kingdom which has been presented by The Teacher, and will now be continued and disseminated by all His disciples to all societies and real life context (home in verse 5-7 and town in verse 8-12).
Third, the mission and preaching of the disciples are not sowing the seed, but reaping the harvest (verse 2). They are the “workers” who are sent to join in harvesting God’s abundant harvest. Harvest season always means increasing workload, which demands additional workers. In other words, workers in God’s field will be never sufficient, there is always need for workers. You and I are called to be workers in God’s field, not the initiator behind the desk nor preacher on the pulpit.
Fourth, the urgency and workload in God’s field demand swift response. All God’s messengers must move fast without wasting time with chit chat conversation and greeting. They preach and present God’s shalom, not an ordinary greeting. Therefore, they don’t need to hassle or worry with budget and means of preaching. Gospel preacher must satisfy themselves with the facilities and hospitality of the people who receive them, without seeking for extra comfort (verse 7).
Fifth, Christian mission will not be escaped from danger and threat. You and I are like sheep sent to a herd of wolves. However, the danger and threat must not stop the preaching. Gospel must be continually preached and presented everywhere. Rejection and threat will have bad impact not to the Gospel nor preachers, but to those who refuse. They will never be the citizens of God’s Kingdom, so they will not receive or savor true peace. For them, the coming of God means the time of trial and punishment (verse 10-12).
(Hortensio Mandaru – Indonesia Bible Society)
DAILY DEDICATED PRAYER
Lord, our Father, I present my today prayer, thought, word, work, joy and sorrow in the unity with Your Son, Jesus Christ, who always presents Himself in the Eucharist for the world salvation. May the Holy Spirit, as the soul of Jesus, also lead and give me the strength today so that I am ready to be the witness of Your love.
Together with St. Mary, Mother of Jesus and the Church, I specially present my prayer to our Pope and Indonesian Church prayer apostles of this month:
For Evangelization intention:
Justice Integrity: May all justice supervisors can work with integrity and strive not to let the world be determined and controlled by injustice. We pray…
For Indonesian Church intention:
Forest Protection: May all human kinds be more aware of taking care of the forest as the lung of the earth and not to utilize and damage it for economic benefits. We pray…
May all people at our diocese inspirit all members of the base community to share the time in quality and full of joy during holiday season or working/school days. We pray…