Weekly Missionary Reflection
Sunday, 08 January 2023
Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord
180th World Missionary Children’s Day
Isa. 60:1-6; Ps. 72:1-2,7-8,10-11,12-13; Eph. 3:2-3a, 5-6; Matt. 2:1-12
Dear beloved missionaries,
Being in the atmosphere of Christmas and New Year, we celebrate the 180th Missionary Children’s Day and also the Epiphany of the Lord. In today’s Eucharistic celebration, the Gospel reading (Matt. 2:1-12) is telling the journey of the magi from the East to Bethlehem to do homage to Baby Jesus.
The Magi from the East were led by the star across Jerusalem, meeting with King Herod, and finally reached Bethlehem where Jesus was born. They offered gold, frankincense and myrrh to Baby Jesus. They were overjoyed after meeting Jesus. They departed home in another way which the Lord told them in their dream in order not to return to Herod, the cruel king. They had passed the hardship and difficulties along their trip in seeking Jesus and after seeing Him they were willing to take another new way which could be not easier than their coming way.
This new or another way taken by the Magi from the East could be comprehended that meeting with Jesus will bring us to a new life. After meeting with Jesus, we will not live in the old life, but a new one. We will become a new individual. Christmas, Epiphany and the celebration of Missionary Children’s Day invite us to find a new and creative way in proclaiming the love of God to our neighbours and creatures.
The Magi from the East walked together in search of Baby Jesus. This also invites us to walk together in finding the will of Jesus the Immanuel, “God with us”. We are asked to walk together to proclaim and present the Kingdom of His Love into our family, society and working place. When we walk together, we are making friends, engaging with each other in virtue, and becoming a blessing to more people. By walking together, we are enabled to face any challenges and adversities in our daily life. By walking together, we could rebuild our unfavourable life due to distractions and obstacles. By walking together, we build a loving civilization in the midst of the increasing act of violence, and we make harmony among the diverse society. By walking together, we develop a culture of peace and fraternity.
We can proclaim and present the love of God through our willingness to make friends with others and be engaged in any kind of virtue for the suffering and poor neighbours. On Missionary Children’s Day which on the same day we also celebrate the Epiphany of the Lord, we could learn from the missionary children: give our hearts to making friends and give hand to be engaged in the spirit of “children helping children” and the action of Prayer, Charity, Sacrifice and Testimony (PCST). Inspired by the spirit and action of PCST, together we could grow the hope and spirit to move and strive to regain the lost dreams. The spirit of Children helping children and the action of PCST is the way of love that we need to take as the new way to present the Kingdom of the Lord’s love. (NW)
(RD. M Nur Widipranoto- National Director of Pontifical Mission Society)
DAILY DEDICATED PRAYER
Lord, our Father, I present my today prayer, thought, word, work, joy, and sorrow in unity with Your Son, Jesus Christ, who always presents Himself in the Eucharist for the salvation of the world. May the Holy Spirit animating Jesus, also be my guidance and strength today so that I am ready to be the witness of Your love.
Together with St. Mary, Mother of Jesus, and the Church, in particular, I present my prayer for our Pope and apostle prayer of Indonesian Church of this month:
For the purpose of Universal Churches: The educators
We pray that educators may be credible witnesses, teaching fraternity rather than competition and helping the youngest and most vulnerable above all.
For the purpose of Indonesian Churches: Optimism and hope
We pray, may this new year be a time of grace, that encourages us to be optimistic, believe, and hope that the Spirit of God will guide and open our eyes to see opportunities and solutions in any adversities, problems, and challenges we are facing.