World Mission Sunday: To Proclaim the Good News!

 

And Jesus said to them, “Go out to the whole world; proclaim the Good News to all creation. He who believes and is baptised will be saved; he who does not believe will be condemned. These are the signs that will be associated with believers: in my name they will cast out devils; they will have the gift of tongues; they will pick up snakes in their hands, and be unharmed should they drink deadly poison; they will lay their hands on the sick, who will recover. And so the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven: there at the right hand of God he took his place, while they going out preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word by the signs that accompanied it (Mark 16:15-20).” 

We all have a mission and that is by our Christian faith to spread the good news of the gospel to the world. But many have not heeded the call due to fear and rejection that they might face. Rather, we need to seek the desire of mission just like how God sent us his only Son Jesus, to save the world and redeem us from the snares of sin, despite all the pain and suffering that he had to endure.

There is always the notion that mission has to be done overseas but for me, I think that it can be done within our own lives too. Many people are searching for Jesus and that is where we are called to bring Jesus to people by speaking about our faith and also living out our faith. This can be done through sharing in and outside of our communities, even at home; and it is important for our loved ones to realise that Jesus is there through our actions and words. This is why we can be missionaries within our own family, and by reminding our family members the presence of Jesus through prayer and time spent with them.

Even the saints were missionaries in spreading the good news of the gospel. Some heed the call to spread the good news in their community (Saint Teresa of the Child Jesus), while others travelled the world in proclaiming the gospel to the many lands they set foot on (St Francis Xavier). The saints recognized having a humble heart, knowing that their merits come from God and trusting that through their work, their needs will be cared for.

Yesterday, I took a brochure after praying to our Lady of Perpetual Succour in church that I would like to share. Since it is Mission Sunday, I thought that it was good to share. It is entitled, “The Mission Mysteries” and it is said for the missions on special occasions. The “World Mission Rosary” was envisioned by the late Archbishop Fulton Sheen. This rosary honours the work and our call to be missionary. The rosary is a powerful source of prayer and we should pray it more often.

The First Mission

Mystery: The Visit of the Magi, 3 strangers arrive from the east.

Mission Intention: That all who seek Jesus will find Jesus.

Reflection: The Magi were astrologers from Persia. When Jesus was born, they read in the stars that there was newborn King of the Jews. This mission teaches us that all who seek God with an open heart will be guided to the Lord.

The Second Mission

Mystery: Jesus speaks with the Samaritan Woman. He speaks to someone considered unworthy.

Mission Intention: Father, help us to understand that all people are your children and that all people deserve respect.

Reflection: Jesus scandalized his followers by speaking to a woman and a non-Jew. But Jesus knows all of God’s children are worthy of respect and love. In addition, Jesus gave the woman a deep desire to know God and to have her people know God too.

The Third Mission

Mystery: Jesus cures the centurion’s servant. He cures the servant of a Roman soldier.

Mission Intention: That all who are ill, especially those who face the hardship of poverty, come to know Jesus’ healing presence.

Reflection: The Romans and Jews were enemies. Yet, this centurion was friendly to the Jews. He was desperate to save his servant. His faith impressed Jesus and Jesus used this example to teach the people of God.

The Fourth Mission

Mystery: Jesus sends out his disciples. He sends his followers to bring the Good News to others.

Mission Intention: That all who bring the Good News to others may do so with the same love and enthusiasm of the first missionaries of Jesus.

Reflection: The disciples went to others, heedless of the danger to themselves and filled with the Holy Spirit. Help me to consider my own missionary vocation, whether it be in my own home or somewhere faraway.

The Fifth Mission

Mystery: The Conversion of Paul- In a very stunning change, through the grace of God, Paul stops persecuting Christians and starts preaching the Good News.

Mission Intention: May we experience true conversion of heart daily through our prayer and good works.

Reflection: Paul transformed the Church from a small sect of Judaism to a truly universal church, teaching us that we must never dismiss others as beyond God’s reach, even when their previous actions show them to be our enemies.

Concluding the Rosary

Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope. To thee do we cry, poor banished Children of Eve. To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley of tears. Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us and after this our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus. O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary!

The Rosary Prayer

O God, whose only begotten Son, by his life, death and resurrection, has purchased for us the rewards of eternal salvation, grant we beseech thee, that while mediating on these mysteries of the most holy rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary, that we may both imitate what they contain and obtain what they promise through Christ our Lord, Amen. Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us. Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us. (Make the sign of the cross).

Archbishop Fulton Sheen said, “The rosary is the book of the blind, where souls see and there enact the greatest drama of love the world has ever known; it is the book of the simple, which initiates them into mysteries and knowledge more satisfying than the education of other men; it is the book of the aged, whose eyes close upon the shadow of this world, and open on the substance of the next. The power of the rosary is beyond description.”

May the Mission Mysteries be a welcome inclusion into the mysteries of the rosary (Joyous, Sorrowful, Glorious, Luminous) and guide us onward in our faith journey in strengthening and sustaining us when we stumble, are doubtful or become weary. May God bless us we continue to pray and be missionaries in our own ways.

I was listening to Johnny Cash “Hurt” and felt that I just have to find a way to push through the pain and uncertainties of life to sustain myself through prayer and find quiet time on my own. Perhaps, I still have time, time to make the best of my few final semesters…

“I hurt myself today
To see if I still feel
I focus on the pain
The only thing that’s real
The needle tears a hole
The old familiar sting
Try to kill it all away
But I remember everything

What have I become
My sweetest friend
Everyone I know goes away
In the end
And you could have it all
My empire of dirt
I will let you down
I will make you hurt

I wear this crown of thorns
Upon my liar’s chair
Full of broken thoughts
I cannot repair
Beneath the stains of time
The feelings disappear
You are someone else
I am still right here

What have I become
My sweetest friend
Everyone I know goes away
In the end
And you could have it all
My empire of dirt
I will let you down
I will make you hurt

If I could start again
A million miles away
I would keep myself
I would find a way” 

Written By: Darren Chan Keng Leong

 

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