“Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope, but do it with gentleness and reverence.”
1 Peter 3:15-16
I love Peter’s admonition to witness hope in God with gentleness and reverence. Never impose. Just live the Good News of salvation in Christ each day with joy—and be the example that changes someone’s life forever. As Pope Francis likes to remind us, Jesus is saying, “Go, don’t miss a chance to bear me witness!”
The Resurrection is the reason for our hope. Christ offers us the gift of eternal life, a gift we want to share with the world. Our Holy Father says Jesus only gave us one instruction of welcome: Make missionary disciples. But make them His, not ours.
When we live our mission calling with humility, we become living witnesses to the Good News of our faith: the belief that mercy defeats sin, hope ends fear, and fellowship overcomes hostility. Pope Francis says that with God’s grace, the mission heart can go beyond human boundaries “all because everyone is a precious treasure, and the meaning of life is found only in giving this treasure to others.”
As the finest example of giving, we have Our Lord himself who had a special love for the sick and the poor. His witness is how I think of mission and the abundance of life that faith provides. As we have said all this month, the more we give, the more we receive, the stronger our faith grows.
Friend, each of us is called to witness our faith—not with clanging cymbals but with good works and devotion to the Sacraments. Draw strength from this, knowing that the Spirit has a unique plan for you as a builder of God’s Kingdom. Be humble—and be faithful to his Word.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Father Raymond J. Finch, M.M.
Prayer for 3rd Sunday May 17, 2020
Missionary disciples together
Lord of love and life
fill me with the fire of Your truth,
wash me in the waters of renewal
and clothe me in Your mantel of justice
that I may witness to Your goodness
before all peoples from every nation.
You Who sent out Your disciples
two by two to announce Your kingdom
may I be a faithful companion
to all who know, love, believe, and call You Lord.
May our respect for one another
our joy in each other’s company
and our willingness to forgive one another
testify before the whole world
that we serve You best when we announce
Your Kingdom together.
In Jesus’ name we pray.
Prayer by Father Joseph R. Veneroso, M.M.