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Saturday, 11 July 2015

Reflection/Homily: Fifteenth (15th) Sunday of Ordinary Time Year B (July 12 2015)

Reflection/Homily: Fifteenth (15th) Sunday of Ordinary Time Year B (July 12 2015)
Theme: The Mission of the Twelve: An Example

Since the creation of the world, God has never ceased to make Himself present among His people. He has used and still uses Patriarchs, Kings, Prophets, Apostles, Priests and other ministers to make His presence felt in the world. In a special way, He is also making Himself present in the world through each and every one of us whom He has sent into the world. In the gospel reading (Mk. 6:7-13), Jesus made himself more present among the people by sending the Twelve apostles to them. Today, he has also sent you to the world as he did to the twelve. Your mandate remains the same with The Twelve; to evangelize the people and make things better for them, but through various approaches; as medical doctors, engineers, teachers, lawyers, labourers, priests, etc. He has given you the authority over every obstacle and has charged you with the responsibility of making the world a better place.

The rhetorical question for today is; How do you fulfill your mission in the world? How have you made the presence of Christ who has sent you into the world felt among His people? How have you contributed to the alleviation of people’s problems and made the world a better place to live? Do you work in a manner that depicts your collaboration to work for the good of humanity after the mind of Christ who went about doing good? Have you preached the Good News through your life style? As a student, farmer, health worker, trader, priest, religious, seminarian, etc, what motivates your mission among the people of God? Are you like Amaziah in the first reading (Amos 7:12-15) who thinks that our mission or vocation is solely to earn money? Unlike him, be disposed like Amos to see your work or vocation as a calling from God and so be disposed to co-operate with His divine will for humanity.

Beloved friends, no matter how difficult your calling or work may be or how despondent you may be, the second reading (Eph 1:3-14) assures you that God chose you to do that even before the world was made. For this reason, He chose us in Christ as His adopted sons and daughters. He gave us the free gift of His beloved through whom we receive forgiveness of sins and the riches of God’s graces. So be assured that you can always find help and grace from God through Jesus Christ when you are in need instead of taking undue advantage of your work/vocation. Be sincere in your business deals and do not charge more than what is fair for your services. Some of us try to take advantage of strangers or those who are not familiar with our businesses to sell substandard products at the cost of the original.

Lastly, to my beloved and brother-seminarians on apostolic work especially those of us beginning today (Okigwe Diocese, Nigeria), God is also addressing us in today’s readings. Like Amos in the 1st reading, let us be reminded that we have not called ourselves; rather, God has called us to go and prophesy to His people. Let the people be our target and not the bread that comes from the people. They have prepared to receive us so let us be prepared to work for them. The second reading reminds us that God’s grace is always available for us. Through this grace, we all have been redeemed and we have to collaborate with this grace in helping our people appreciate and live out the Good News of salvation. The gospel reading reminds us of the missionary nature of our work. Do not expect the whole world to welcome us, let us be disposed for obstacles on the way which we shall surmount with the grace of God. Therefore, let us not be afraid. Let us not entertain the people but preach repentance. Let us also remember to keep behind all useless anxieties, worries and possessions that would distract us so that at the end, we come back with success stories. May the Good Lord bless and crown our efforts with success. Amen. God loves you.

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