Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Twenty-third Week
Ordinary Time

Should you now be able to download the readings -- seems to be blocked this AM -- the gospel for today is Luke 6:12-19.

When Jesus goes to pray, many times he has with him two groups of people: first, those who came to hear Jesus, who were committed to his teachings.  There were also those who have been designated as apostles.  These were those selected to continue the mission that Jesus had marked as his own effort to make known the will of the Father.  It was this group, The Twelve, who became the founders with Jesus of the new community.  Theirs was a special mission:  to them was given the original message to be preserved and spread among the nations.  The apostles were the beginnings of what we know today as the "teaching magisterium" of our Church.  In their hands rests the responsibility for maintaining the integrity of what Jesus taught, of what we find in the gospels that have been handed on to us.

The title, apostle, stretches from the founding days to us today.  Every baptised Christian is given the mission by God and Jesus with the gifts of the Holy Spirit to assure that others have the opportunity to come to know the message Jesus taught his first apostles.  Because of the sacrament of baptism, we have more than a duty to be hearers of the Word of God.  We are entrusted with the Word to be "doers of the Word."  We are charged with being teachers of the Word as well.

Today we are reminded again of our responsibility to know the message that Jesus taught and that has been subsequently taught to us by the teaching magisterium of our Church.  We are called to be active apostles in today's world where the message of Jesus is so clearly lacking in the Christian communities. We are true apostles when our lives are models of what Jesus called his first disciples to be.  It is what we say, how we act and the many relationships we build in our lives that are the means we make our lives truly apostolic.

So, it is through prayer, through knowing the Sacred Scriptures that we can live an apostolic life that touches others, that brings others into the abundance that God has promised to those who know him and live as he has called us to live.  Like the woman who had health issues and felt that she only had to touch Jesus' garment to be freed from the illness that impeded her life, we, too, have been taught to reach out and touch Jesus in our lives so that whatever "illness" inhibits our apostolic lives will be removed from our lives.