WORD of the DAY
Jesus went around to all the towns and villages,
teaching in their synagogues,
proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom,
and curing every disease and illness.
At the sight of the crowds, his heart was moved with pity for them
because they were troubled and abandoned,
like sheep without a shepherd. (Matthew 9:35-10: 1-8)
Today we see Jesus traveling to all the towns and villages to teach and to cure. His heart was moved with pity for them…they were troubled and abandoned. This sounds much like our times now when there is so much unrest and anxiety for many reasons. But perhaps it is all the harbinger of something new, like a voice that is sounding in our ears, “This is the way; walk in it” (Isaiah 30: 19-26). This is the Advent journey we are on right now and it leads to Christ even as He comes toward us. We are the voice of Jesus, His witnesses, His healing and consoling hands. We are so loved and trusted, that Jesus asks us to carry on His mission in the world, the piece of world we live in as we reach out to others with the Good News of Christ among us.
Jesus asks us to pray for laborers for the harvest. We are those laborers and He expects us to act on the opportunities He sends us. This is how the Kingdom of God spread right from the beginning, with people helping people both physically and spiritually in every way imaginable. This is how we make Christ visible here and now in our daily life.
On this First Saturday of Advent, our dear Mother Mary walks with us, whispering in our hearts, “Do whatever He tells you”. We can be Jesus’ helpers in building a new world of peace and justice, a new era of hope.
The voice of Father Walter J. Ciszek, SJ
The Kingdom of God will not be brought to fulfillment on earth by one great, sword-swinging battle against the powers of darkness, but only by each of us laboring and suffering day after day as Christ labored and suffered, until all things at last have been transformed. And this process of transformation continues to the end of time.
(Fr. Ciszek was convicted of being a ‘Vatican spy’ in World War II and spent 29 years in Soviet prisons. He is the author of ‘With God in Russia’.)