Feast of Saint Luke, evangelist
Reading 1 2 Tm 4:10-17B; Gospel Lk 10:1-9
“But the Lord stood by my and gave me strength so that through me the proclamation might be completed.”
St. Paul gives the entire credit of his missionary activities to Jesus Christ in spite of the innumerable hardships and tribulations that he had to face as part of his vibrant proclamation. The first reading would remind all of us that giving witness to the other on what we profess is indeed a hectic task. The reward that awaits the one who dares to do so is abandonment and persecution. St. Paul would exhort us not to lose hope in proclaiming Christ because we are assisted and strengthened by the one about whom we preach and he is none other than Jesus Christ.
The gospel passage of the day is also about the missionary discourse wherein Jesus summons the 72 and narrates to them the do’s and don’ts of the missionary activities. Jesus is very clear regarding the instructions because he wants his disciples to give a genuine witness to the other through their own life style. In other words Jesus demands that we should practice what we preach.
Whenever this gospel passage is read there is a tendency for people to interpret that these warnings of Jesus are purely for those priests and religious who are directly involved in the proclamation of the kingdom but the fact is that all those who are baptized in the name of Jesus have the prime duty to preach the good news under whatever circumstance they work. It requires a sense of courage and sacrifice as St. Paul would say. Secondly we should constantly remind ourselves of the fact that preaching doesn’t mean the oration that I deliver in public instead as the gospel of today would rightly point out, it’s a call to give witness and to practice what we preach. It is certainly a daring task which involves a sincere passion for the one in whom we profess our faith. May the good Lord who stood by St. Paul and who gave him strength be also our source of inspiration in this regard.