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Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time — July 11, 2021

Bishop’s Reflections

July 11, 2021

Every Sunday, Bishop Edward Malesic writes a Scripture reflection for the faithful. Follow the bishop on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Click HERE for the readings.

Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time — July 11, 2021

After having spent time with Jesus, coming to know his parables, his miraculous power, and to know him personally, he sends his disciples out in pairs to drive out demons and anoint the sick. Jesus gave them “authority over unclean spirits.”

This is a pattern for evangelization that is applicable to us as well. We sit at the feet of Jesus, we come to know him personally, we have heard his stories in the Gospel, we have witnessed his great deeds in our lives. Then he sends us out to dispel the darkness of the world by being a light for all to see. He also gives us power over unclean spirits and the ability to bring others to him for healing.

Someone once said that the two most important words of Jesus were “come” and “go.” Jesus has asked us to “come and see” like he did with his first disciples in John 1:39, and, if we have given our attention to the Lord, we have seen tremendous things and lives changed — even miracles performed. In Jesus we have seen the face of the Father himself. But there comes a time when Jesus says to us, “go!” At the end of the Gospel of Matthew Jesus says to his newborn Church, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations . . . and teach them to obey everything that I have commanded you.”

One of the dismissals for the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is, “Go and announce the Gospel of the Lord.” This is a command for all of us who have found Jesus to be both redeemer and Lord. We cannot keep the truth of God’s love for us to ourselves. God asks us to share what we have received from him.

Now, the early disciples were told not to take much with them on the journey, only the basic necessities. It is a reminder to us to trust in God who provides all we need for the journey of faith he is asking us to make into the world. In the Lord’s Prayer, we say “Give us this day our daily bread.” And the Lord provides it for us. The disciples were also told to accept the welcome of others — and not to spend too much time with their greatest naysayers (shake the dust from your feet).

Finally, Jesus sent them out in pairs. Why? For one thing, it is easier for us to embrace the faith with the help of others, and to keep the faith by joining like-minded believers. Jesus gave us the Church so that we could go out together and not on our own and alone.

So, do the work of evangelists. Do not be afraid to speak of your faith — even if the world is hostile to it. But ask the Lord for wisdom to know when to stay and when to move on, and what people to befriend who will help you live out the faith and promote the faith. Remember, we “come” to Jesus and we then “go” with others to give what he has given us and to do what he has asked of us.

Have a blessed week everyone.

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