Wednesday, September 24, 2014
25th Week in Ordinary Time
1st Reading: Prv 30:5-9
Gospel: Lk 9:1–6
Jesus called his twelve disciples and gave them power and authority to drive out all evil spirits and to heal diseases. And he sent them to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick. He instructed them, “Don’t take anything for the journey, neither walking stick, nor bag, nor bread, nor silver coins; and don’t even take a spare tunic. Whatever house you enter, remain there until you leave that place. And wherever they don’t welcome you, leave the town and shake the dust from your feet: it will be as a testimony against them.”
So they set out and went through the villages, proclaiming the good news and healing people everywhere.
(Daily Gospel in the Assimilated Life Experience)
Jesus’ message to the Twelve before they left for the mission carried four distinct instructions, namely, to “Heal”, to “Exorcise” demons, to “Announce” the coming of the kingdom, and to “Leave” unresponsive towns behind. (H.E.A.L.). A closer look at Jesus’ life will reveal that Jesus himself already performed these before he commissioned his disciples to do them.
Jesus healed the sick. After Jesus healed Simon’s mother-in-law, he also healed all the sick who were brought to him (Luke 4: 38-40). He cured the leper who said: “Lord if you wish you can heal me” (Luke 5: 12-16), the paralytic that was lowered down from the roof (Luke 5:17-26), a man whose right hand was withered even though healing was forbidden on a Sabbath (Luke 6:6-10), the slave of the centurion (Luke 7:1-10), the daughter of Jairus, and the woman with a hemorrhage (Luke 8:40-56).
Jesus exorcised demons. After he cured the mother-in-law of Simon, and after healing all sick people brought to him, he also rebuked demons that were shouting “you are the Son of God”. (Luke 4:41. See also Luke 4:38-40). At the territory of the Gerasenes, Jesus drove out a legion of demons from a possessed man and allowed these demons to enter the pigs. (Luke 8:40-56).
Jesus announced the kingdom. When the crowd went looking for him at Capernaum after he healed many sick people including the mother-in-law of Simon, Jesus said he also had to go to other towns to announce the kingdom (Luke 4:43. See also Luke 8:1).
Jesus left unresponsive towns in testimony against them. Jesus respected the freedom of people. At one time, the disciples asked permission to pray for fire and brimstone to fall on a town that did not welcome them. But Jesus did not tolerate such violent reaction but merely moved on to another town. In today’s Gospel reading he also instructed them to leave inhospitable towns in testimony against them (Luke 9:1-6).
Today, Jesus continues to call disciples to H.E.A.L. the world. The least we can do is to welcome those who respond to the call and to support them. – Rev. Fr. Dan Domingo P. delos Angeles, Jr., DM. Email: email@example.com. Website: www.frdan.org.
Prayer for the day: Father, give us generous hearts so that we may share our resources to people working in your vineyard and so help build your kingdom on earth through Christ our Lord. Amen.
SAINT OF THE DAY: St. Gerard Sagredo, Bishop and Martyr, born in Venice. He joined the Benedictine monastery of San Giorgio Maggiore in Venice when he was just a young boy. Later, he left and went on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. While traveling in Hungary, he was asked by the King, St. Stephen, to tutor his son. This made him known as a very good preacher and he was eventually appointed bishop. There was a general uprising against Christianity after the death of King Stephen. The idolatrous soldiers persecuted those with Faith. St. Gerard was one of them. He was martyred when he was pierced by a lance and tossed into the Danube River on September 24, 1046.