Sharing Our Faith
In today’s Gospel, Our Lord sends out the seventy-two disciples to proclaim the Good News ahead of Him. The implication of this is that the Church is missionary and we are all sent out to announce the Gospel. And this is not just for priests and bishops. All the baptised are called to this missionary activity. We have to share our faith in JESUS. For most of us this doesn’t mean we have to travel to foreign lands like St Paul or found schools or hospitals or religious orders, or go out preaching in Loughborough Market Place. Your places of evangelisation are the people and places you frequent on a regular basis. Do the people you meet often see you as a follower of Christ, a Catholic and a member of St Mary’s Parish? Do you pray for the people you encounter each day? Do you ask God to give you opportunities to witness to the Gospel and bring people into His Church?
Our Faith cannot be just a private matter, although many in power would like to silence the voice of the Church completely in society, and at the moment they seem to be doing a pretty good job. We need to give witness in public places. For example, if you go out for a meal, make sure you pray before eating. It’s important others see this. Don’t be afraid to wear a cross in public. Priests and religious ought to be visible in public and wear their habits. It can provoke conversations about our Faith. Make the sign of the cross when you pass a Catholic Church, and come and speak to Our Lord for a few minutes in the Blessed Sacrament. Don’t be afraid to be seen in public with a Rosary. Make sure your homes look Catholic. We need to support each other in giving witness.
Our Lord also says, “The harvest is rich but the labourers are few. So ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers to His harvest.” Please pray every day our Prayer for Vocations and do your best to attend the monthly Holy Hour for Vocations from our Parish. The next one will be on Thursday 1st August at 7pm. Is there a young man or even an older unmarried man whom you think might make a good priest or a girl who might make a good religious sister? Pray about suggesting it to them. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you as to what to say. The Rosminians and the Diocese of Nottingham need priests, brothers and sisters now. What we do or fail to do in this regard will impact our future parish life. Now is the time for us to cooperate actively with JESUS’ plan for the good of the Church – for only in this way can we hope to have life, and have it more abundantly (John 10:10).
Fr Paul Gillham, IC