Reflections - July 3, 2016

“……..I am sending you like lambs among wolves.”  Mt. 10:16.
 
The Gospel presents us with Jesus sending His disciples to announce the Good News of Salvation, which is not only based on the power of human resources but in the experience of their communion of life with Him that transformed their hearts.  They leave joyful announcing the release of sin and salvation.  However, the Lord tells them that evangelization is not based on its forces and alerts them of the obstacles of evil.
 
“I am sending you like lambs among wolves.”
 
Today the Church is still experiencing that terrible reality.  We live in a world where Christians are persecuted, for example Syria, Iraq, etc…..and in many countries with different ideologies…., and a moral relativism, as Pope Benedict XVI said, “where everything wants to be experimented without assuming responsibilities…”.  There also exists a lack of respect for the unborn and euthanasia where those who carry the message of justice and salvation to all sometimes feel “like lambs among wolves”.
 
Jesus knows the consciousness of human beings and teaches us that the message of salvation is sometimes well received, while other times it is refused or distorted when the message goes against Christian interests and ideologies. However the Church was founded more than two thousand years ago and assists us in the New Evangelization with the light of the Holy Spirit to enlighten families and evangelize a social environment that desperately is looking for an encouraging and compassionate word.
 
I wish to remind you that today’s readings also give us a message of hope to “follow the Lord through where He traveled first and live like He lived”.  If you notice in the first reading Isaiah says:  “announce joy because the message we announce is of love”, it insists that we recognize that everything we do, we do for the love of the Lord, “and that without Him we can do nothing”.  In the  Second Reading Paul tells us that when I live that radicalism in the love of Christ then my glory and work “is to follow the Crucified Christ” who strengthens me  through prayer in the evangelization to console at the right time and the wrong time.
 
Let us pray to the Lord in the Eucharist for that spiritual strength that we very much need to work with love for the Kingdom of God in spite of “the stalking of the wolves that are evil”.  Do not be afraid for “we are God’s loving Children and our names are inscribed in the Kingdom of God.