Gospel Reflection for 14th Sunday Ordinary Time Year C – July 3rd 2016
The Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them out ahead of him, in pairs, to all the towns and places he himself was to visit. He said to them, ‘The harvest is rich but the labourers are few, so ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers to his harvest. Start off now, but remember, I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. Carry no purse, no haversack, no sandals. Salute no one on the road. Whatever house you go into, let your first words be, “Peace to this house!” And if a man of peace lives there, your peace will go and rest on him; if not, it will come back to you. Stay in the same house, taking what food and drink they have to offer, for the labourer deserves his wages; do not move from house to house. Whenever you go into a town where they make you welcome, eat what is set before you. Cure those in it who are sick, and say, “The kingdom of God is very near to you”. But whenever you enter a town and they do not make you welcome, go out into its streets and say, . “We wipe off the very dust of your town that clings to our feet, and leave it with you. Yet be sure of this: the kingdom of God is very near.” I tell you, on that day it will not go as hard with Sodom as with that town.
The seventy-two came back rejoicing. ‘Lord,’ they said ‘even the devils submit to us when we use your name.’ He said to them, ‘I watched Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Yes, I have given you power to tread underfoot serpents and scorpions and the whole strength of the enemy; nothing shall ever hurt you. Yet do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you; rejoice rather that your names are written in heaven.’
Luke 10:1-12. 17-20
The first reading (Isaiah 66:10-14) is about the joy of going home to mother! Ever remember coming home to the smell of the bread, the ornaments in the home and the hug of your mother? The God of joy is bringing his people home.
WELCOMED WITH JOY
This welcoming with joy and solidarity keeps us human and humble. We need each other to find joy in God, we don’t go to God on our own. We have one God who is like father and mother to us, and we are brothers and sisters.
God is the mother welcoming and merciful, no matter where we have been or what we have done. God the mother invites us to follow the Lord Jesus. The things of Jesus are to be first in life –mercy, forgiveness, the common good of all, faith and prayer.
We recognise people by their step or their knock on the door. It’s a knowledge of the heart. This is like the intimacy of our relationship with God. It’s an intimate knowing.
This is the reason of the Church – to be the community in love and for love. Pope Francis calls the church ‘a love story’. The love of the mother God still around today. Calls us not to Jerusalem but to the living God in our parish, school, family, and neighbourhood. In our loves of friendship, of marriage and for the poor. Calling us to find this reign of God in love and spread it in works of justice, compassion and mercy.
Fr Donal Neary SJ is editor of the Sacred Heart Messenger