My friends today I would like briefly to share with you my reflection rooted in today's gospel. Saint Luke tells us that Jesus appointed 72 others in pairs to every town and place that he intended to visit. As I reflected upon that particular sentence, I thought that we are the ones being sent out into the world today. And by virtue of our baptism, we are also the one for whom a visit is being prepared.
Some years ago in a telecast, bishop Fulton Sheen said something to the effect that the incarnation is not just a past event, it is also something that is happening in our time as well through you and through me. Was this not implied by Jesus identifying himself as those who are hungry, and thirsty, naked, stranger, and in prison? Remember what he said whatever you did to the least of these my brothers and sisters, you did to me present in those persons. Saint Augustine, referring to the Eucharist, said you are what you eat. And what is it that we eat here at the Lord’s Table; the bread becomes the body of Christ. Remember through the words of the servant song: will you let me be your servant, will you let me be as Christ to you? And pray that I may have the grace to let you be my servant too.
We’re all called to be Christ to others. That is our mission to be Christ to others. I hesitate to share the following with you and I do so only to make a point. The importance of doing the best that we can to be as Christ to others. This is a note I received from this year's graduating class from our school's eighth grade, and it reads: Dear monsignor Manny, thank you so much for contributing to the significant part of our faith journey. You have always been a strong example of Christ and we are blessed to learn from you. To everyone you meet, you are kind and Christ-like and have encouraged us to be the same. May God bless you and grant you days of love and laughter. We are eternally grateful. Love, Marissa J and the class of 2022.
If this can be said of me it can also be said of you. I would like to conclude with another thought rooted in today's gospel. Today’s gospel in our collective history reminds us that we must acknowledge the threats that exist in the world just as Jesus did. Jesus did not say that all will be well along the journey, instead he speaks plainly of hostile conditions: I am sending you like lambs among wolves. He calls on his followers to enter communities peacefully despite the hostility. They would face the sentiment is important, extremely important as it confirms that we should not answer hostility with more hostility. Yet refusing hostility is not enough by itself, we must also work to decrease hostility, and increase safety for all people. The gospel inspires us to work as a community, a community to address, and not avoid the issues of racism and injustice that do exist in our world. And we can do this, we can do this if we are as Christ to one another.
我們都蒙召成為眾人的基督。我們的使命就是服務眾人。盡最大的努力成為眾人的基督是非常的重要。聖若瑟八年級畢業班給了我一封信，上面寫：親愛的曼尼神父，非常感謝您為我們信仰的旅程做出的貢獻。你一向是跟隨基督的榜樣，對待每一個人，都像基督一樣的善良，並鼓勵我們學習基督。我們很幸運能有你這樣的榜樣。願天主保佑你，日日充滿了愛與歡笑。我們永遠感激你。愛，瑪麗莎 J 和 2022 年全體畢業生。