11 July 2015


amos 7:12-15; ephesians 1:3-14; mark 6:7-13

she begins her program with a bach symphony. she next plays an irish air, then a bob dylan folk song and finally a jazz improvisation of her creation. the venue: a hospice; the audience: one… a 70-year-old woman with terminal cancer. through her music she provides a measure of peace for those walking their last steps in this world.
as soon as he gets home from office, he heads to his garden, a quarter-acre plot, where he grows tomatoes, beans and corn. he saves a small part of the harvest for his family, and shares the rest with needy families in the locality (author unknown).
with their «walking sticks»—a guitar or a few seeds—these two (and so many others like them) reach out to the needy. they make us realize that we don’t need much to be apostles of compassion and healing.  

this is the emphasis of this sunday’s liturgy. 
the first reading tells us about amos, a sheep-breeder from tekoa in the southern land of judah. GOD sends him to the neighbouring northern land, israel, where amos denounces social injustice and laxity in religion. he is not a qualified prophet. in his own words: «i am not a prophet, nor a prophet’s son.» GOD’s word—«go prophesy»—is his only qualification. 
the gospel is about the mission of the twelve. they had no special qualification for the mission: no special social position, no special education in scripture/theology. plus they have JESUS’ instructions: «no resources.» all they have and need is trust in the one who sends them; all they carry with them is his message. 

all of us, by virtue of our baptism, are called and given the mission to proclaim the good news, to reach out to the suffering, the sick and the downtrodden. 
i do not need much; i do not need to be a qualified… priest or prophet or theologian to proclaim the good news and to reach out to GOD’s people. in fact, i already have the sole qualification i need: BDC… baptised disciple of CHRIST!

do i believe that i have a vocation… that GOD has called me and given the mission to be his messenger to the people in my life? how am i going to proclaim his message in my way in the week ahead?