Friday, October 18, 2013

A godly life is the strongest argument you can offer the skeptic

Sometimes we don't need another chance to express how we feel or to ask someone to understand our situation. Sometimes we just need a firm kick in the pants. An unsmiling expectation that if we mean all these wonderful things we talk about and sing about, then lets see something to prove it. --Dietrich Bonhoeffer (theologian, martyr, a spiritual writer)

Gospel Text: (LK 10:1-9)
The Lord Jesus appointed seventy-two disciples
whom he sent ahead of him in pairs
to every town and place he intended to visit.
He said to them,
“The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few;
so ask the master of the harvest
to send out laborers for his harvest.
Go on your way;
behold, I am sending you like lambs among wolves.
Carry no money bag, no sack, no sandals;
and greet no one along the way.
Into whatever house you enter,
first say, ‘Peace to this household.’
If a peaceful person lives there,
your peace will rest on him;
but if not, it will return to you.
Stay in the same house and eat and drink what is offered to you,
for the laborer deserves payment.
Do not move about from one house to another.
Whatever town you enter and they welcome you,
eat what is set before you,
cure the sick in it and say to them,
‘The Kingdom of God is at hand for you.’”

The key to everything, as Jesus pointed out, is to remember that the Kingdom of God is at hand. It is right here, right now. It is not about something that will happen in the future, but something available now to everyone and we have the opportunity of bringing them that message. This is the heart of the new evangelization.

Pope Francis, toward the end of his encyclical Lumen Fidei, the Light of Faith, stated: “Modern man sought to build a universal brotherhood based on equality, yet we gradually came to realize that this brotherhood, lacking a reference to a common Father as its ultimate foundation, cannot endure.”

The Pope also includes a caution: Yet in speaking of the light of faith, we can almost hear the objections of many of our contemporaries. In modernity, that light might have been considered sufficient for societies of old, but was felt to be of no use for new times, for a humanity come of age, proud of its rationality and anxious to explore the future in novel ways.

To many people in the world, our faith seems out of fashion and out of date. Nothing can be farther from the truth. Now more than ever people need a savior!

As Pope Francis points out, this objection does not stop us, but merely provides a context - where our culture is - as we continue to declare our faith in deed and in word.

In our gospel passage, Jesus gives us some wonderful insights on how we commit ourselves to this appointed task.

May we truly be bearers of that light!

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