“Go out to
the whole world and proclaim the Good News”- Mark
My dear brothers
and sisters in Christ Jesus, today’s Gospel teaches us the responsibility of being
a Christian. We are all Christians. We hear the Word of God; we pray for
different blessings; we always remember the good that the Lord has done for us,
and we thank Him. The spiritual gifts are blessings given to us: we are privileged
to celebrate mass, to go for confession, to receive the holy sacraments, to
pray and to read the Word of God. During times of difficulties and pain, we
always come to the altar of the Lord. We pray for healing, and in different
ways every one of us is blessed.
These are all Christian privileges. But what exactly is our Christian responsibility? Have you ever thought about this? Jesus tells us in today’s Gospel, “Go out into the whole world and proclaim the Good News to all creation”. People who were filled with the power of the Spirit and who saw the resurrected Christ went out to share the joy of the Resurrection. These days we are called to share the same joy with everyone around us. Faith is a gift given to us and not for holding onto for ourselves and our families. Faith needs to be shared with the whole of humanity.
Word of God
In each of our life situations, when we meet people and when we speak, we are all called to preach the Word of God, and to proclaim that Jesus is alive. Many of you who participate in this Holy Eucharistic celebration are preaching the Word of God in different ways. For instance, when your friends are in trouble, difficulty or sickness, you encourage them to read the Bible, or to contact us here for prayers. The Christian ministry is to give Christ to everyone, to share the joy and the person of Christ. At the same time, we are asked to lead a life full of joy, in Christian fellowship, Christian faith, and following Christian doctrines. My brothers and sisters, these are not stagnant principles. We are called to move our faith and to proclaim that Jesus Christ wants to protect, heal, and touch everyone.
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing,
give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus
for you – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NRSV)
This verse tells
us the real proclamation of God. Rejoice always and be happy in the name of
Jesus! My brothers and sisters, when you are joyful, you are preaching the Word
of God. When children see their parents rejoicing, they learn that their
parents are with the Lord. Anyone who believes never has to worry because the Mighty
One is with them. Of course we all have problems and struggles in our
day-to-day lives. However, in the midst of all your difficulties, if you are
able to rejoice, it is always a sign that you are filled with the power of
Christ. So the best way to preach the Word of God is to be happy. Wherever you
are, glorify the Lord and thank Him for all the blessings. Know that you are in
the hands of the Lord and not lacking anything in your life. Do not worry or be
anxious about what is going to happen. Live in the day, in each moment, and do
not wait for tomorrow. People who are happy are given the gift of time. They have
the gift of life. They have the gift of Jesus. Praise the Lord!
Every time we participate in the Holy Eucharistic celebration, we are called to look into our own lives and ask, “What are the ways the Lord has blessed me?” Very often we will complain, which is also our human nature. Naturally we come to Him upset with tensions and difficulties, but it is good that we can sit before the Lord and complain. Complaining is also a prayer, a beautiful prayer. But my dear brothers and sisters, we shall not be complaining-people all the time! There are also times we must declare the wonderful works that the Lord has done.
Make a list of all the ways that God has blessed and protected you, your life, and your family. Every one of us has received gifts: husbands and wives must be thankful for the gift of their life partner, and if they have children they must thank the Lord for them. And dear children, you are called to thank the Lord for the gift of your parents, your teachers and every good circumstance that has prospered your life. Everything good is a gift given to you. Look at your surroundings and all the spiritual and material blessings and thank the Lord. When we do this, we are given the gift of life, the gift of Christ, and the gift of the Holy Spirit.
Preach with your own life
Saint Francis of Assisi used to say, “Preach the Gospel at all times and if necessary, use words.” Let your friends and associates know that you are happy because you are filled with the power of Christ. Even if you can speak something of Jesus to at least one of your colleagues, that is a great thing. Sometimes your life circumstances and schedules may not allow you to preach the Word of God directly. But you can preach with your good examples. Even giving a smile or an encouraging word are ways to proclaim the Gospel. Share the fellowship with your kindness, good words, patience and love. Do not think that preaching the Word is about going to a parish or running a retreat. Rather, preaching the Word of God takes place each and every moment of our lives.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 tells us to pray without ceasing, which is another way to preach the Word of God. Wherever we are, we can pray for the mission of the Church and for all the missionaries around the world, especially those in difficult places. Many have still not heard the Word of God, and our brothers and sisters have travelled far from their homes to different lands to proclaim the Gospel in challenging situations. We are called to strengthen them through our prayers and penances.
given to you, be happy with what you have. Our lives are not that long; we are
not on this earth for hundreds of years, our lifespan is more like 70, 80 or 90
years. Examine your conscience and ask, “Am
I grateful to the Lord for all the wonderful gifts I have received? I am called
to happiness, but am I really happy?” We have hundreds of reasons to be
grateful. So today my brothers and sisters, rejoice, pray unceasingly and be
thankful in all circumstances, for this is the Will of God in Christ Jesus for
you. Amen! Praise the Lord!