We read in the Gospel “At that time the Lord appointed seventy-two others whom he sent ahead of him in pairs to every town and place he intended to visit. He said to them, ‘The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest…Whatever town you enter and they welcome you, eat what is set before you, cure the sick in it and say to them ‘The Kingdom of God is at hand for you.’…The seventy-two returned rejoicing and said, ‘Lord even the demons are subject to us because of your name.’ Jesus said ‘Behold, I have given you the power to tread upon serpents and scorpions and upon the full force of the enemy and nothing will harm you. Nevertheless, do not rejoice because the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice because your names are written in heaven.'”
Cardinal Ratzinger. This is part of a prophecy that he made about the Church in the near future ” It will become small and will have to start pretty much all over again. It will no longer have use of the structures it built in its years of prosperity. The reduction in the number of faithful will lead to it losing an important part of its social privileges.” It will start off with small groups and movements and a minority that will make faith central to experience again. “It will be a more spiritual Church, and will not claim a political mandate flirting with the Right one minute and the Left the next. It will be poor and will become the Church of the destitute.” (My Thoughts..We are now entering a time when we will have to start afresh from Christ and the Upper Room of Pentecost. Where we will look like the Church from the Acts of the Apostles.
For this homily most of my ideas are from Raniero Cantalamessa book ‘Navigating the New Evangelization’
An image that came to me in prayer this morning was Jesus as an Industrial Size Magnet. The type of magnet that can lift a car. Jesus is the magnet and the force that pulls metal towards the magnet is the Holy Spirit. Jesus takes the steal arrows out of our heart.
The Christian faith was born with universal openness. Jesus told his apostles to go ‘Into all the world’ to ‘make disciples of all nations’ and to ‘be his witnesses to the ends of the earth.’
Origen says this about the early Christians “Christians to not neglect, as far as it lies within them, to take measures to disseminate their doctrine throughout the whole world. Some of them, accordingly, have made it their business to ininerate not only through cities, but even villages and country houses, that they might make converts to God. And no one would maintain that they did this for the sake of gain, when sometimes they would not accept even necessary gains.”
The success of the early Christians “The Christian ability to reconcile within itself the opposing trends and value of the different religions and cultures of it time. Christianity presented itself as the same time as the religion of the Spirit and power, that is, it was accompanied by supernatural signs, gifts and miracles, while at the same time being the religion of reason and the integral Logos- ‘The true philosophy’ in the words of Saint Justin Martyr. This is what the Fathers of the Church intended by the theme of the ‘sober intoxication of the Spirit.’
“The Church” Pope Paul VI once said “needs to regain the eagerness, the zest, and the certainty of its truths.”
*Parable of the sower…The farmer plants the seeds it grows he knows not how.
(tell now heard these words one morning waking up in hotel across the street from Church where Jesus appeared to Saint Margaret Mary.
Mary, Star of Evangelization
In Paul VI ‘Evangelii Nuntiandi’ first time Mary is called the star of the New Evanglization
“On the Morning of Pentecost she watched over with her prayers the beginning of evangelization prompted by the Holy Spirit: may she be the Star of the Evangelization ever renewed that the Church, docile to her Lord’s command, must promote and accomplish, especially in these times, which are difficult but full of hope.”