"The proof of love is in the works. Where love exists, it works great things. But when it ceases to act, it ceases to exist."~Pope St. Gregory the Great
Gospel text (Mt 10:7-15): Jesus said to his disciples, «Go and proclaim this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven is near’. Heal the sick, bring the dead back to life, cleanse the lepers, and drive out demons. You received this as a gift, so give it as a gift. Do not carry any gold, silver or copper in your purses. Do not carry a traveler's bag, or an extra shirt, or sandals, or walking-stick: workers deserve their living. When you come to a town or a village, look for a worthy person and stay there until you leave. As you enter the house, wish it peace. If the people in the house deserve it, your peace will be on them; if they do not deserve it, your blessing will come back to you. And if you are not welcomed and your words are not listened to, leave that house or that town and shake the dust off your feet. I assure you, it will go easier for the people of Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than it will for the people of that town».
Today, we want to foresee even the unforeseeable. And, if today we talk so much about peace, perhaps it is because we need it so badly.
We want to foresee even the unforeseeable: soon, we shall buy insurance to foresee the possibility our insurer may fail us. Or, perhaps, to foresee our buying a pair of trousers, and the sales clerk giving us a stained or discolored pair! Today's Gospel, with its invitation to travel without any luggage («Do not carry any gold, silver or copper in your purses»), is inciting us to confidence, to availability. But, look out! This does not mean carelessness! Not even improvisation. Living this reality is only possible through a life deeply rooted in what is truly fundamental: in the person of Christ. His Holiness John Paul II says: «We must respect an essential principle of the Christian vision of our life: the supremacy of Grace. We should not forget that without Christ, ‘we can do nothing’ (cf. Jn 15:5)».
Today, Jesus tells us «go»; go out. In other words, do bear in mind, those you have beside you. Let us, therefore, keep them in our mind, open to their needs.
This idea of the authority to heal, or gift to direct the healing power of God, is not discussed very often in advising circles (or if it is discussed, not openly). Yet here it is, in the Gospel: Jesus sends His apostles out on the road to heal. This suggests that mere knowledge and passion are not enough. A healer needs more than that.
As illustrated in other Gospel accounts, Jesus is unable to heal when He is among people with little faith. The healing power, then, might be thought to flow from the community of believers, and from the individual who wishes to be healed,
We must ask ourselves, then, how we might contribute to a healing environment. We are not all called to be healers, but perhaps we are all called to contribute in some way. Perhaps a good start is to reflect upon our commitment to that community of believers. Do we open new wounds, or help soothe old ones? Do we nurture the sick back to health with our smiles? Or do we take care of our own and let the rest fend for themselves?
Let, therefore, the force of Christ's Today soak us up! And... «who has truly found Christ cannot keep Him only for himself, he has to announce Him» (John Paul II).
Thursday, July 8, 2010
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