For the Fifteenth Ordinary Sunday of the Church Year
Today in his Gospel, the Lord sends out the twelve apostles on a mission through the countryside.
The Lord has a mission for each of us in his Church.
In some ways, our individual missions might be like the special mission he gave the apostles.
In other ways, our individual missions will be different from the mission of the apostles.
What was unique about the apostolic mission the Gospel shows us today?
Today in his Gospel, Christ sends out the apostles as materially well equipped as beggars.
He forbids them to take much more than the clothes they are already wearing.
No luggage, no money, no food, no supplies.
Moreover, he warns them not even to expect success, but simply to abandon any town that rejects them.
However, the Lord sends out the apostles supplied with something money cannot buy and the world cannot give.
What Christ gives them comes from himself, from the Father and from the Holy Spirit.
Christ gives these twelve overseers of the Church the power and authority to overcome demons, to heal the sick and to preach repentance.
That is all the twelve apostles are to carry with them; and that is all they are to do.
It is infinitely more than enough.
They go materially empty-handed.
Yet, the power, authority and mission Christ gives them is “good news” that touches BOTH the material world of bodily sickness and health, AS WELL AS the spiritual world of freedom and demonic affliction.
The apostolic power, authority and mission offer to humanity both bodily and spiritual freedom, because the power and authority are from God the Creator.
The apostles have nothing to carry or give except what belongs to Christ whose kingship and kingdom the apostles announce.
The apostles have handed down in the Church the same mission they received from Christ.
All else in the Church derives from that mission or serves as its vehicle.
The mission that Christ gives to each of us might not include a command to preach and work in the world begging and homeless.
Whatever the conditions and methods of our individual missions, they all share the goal of the mission the twelve apostles received from Christ.
The goal of that mission is the glory of God and the eventual full freedom of both the bodies and the spirits of the royal sons and daughters of God.
The glory of God, and the freedom of the children of God— freedom in body and spirit!
What we receive in the Church comes from Christ, belongs to Christ and IS Christ— Christ offering himself by the power of the Spirit for the glory of the Father and the good of our race.
Take and eat.
This is my body.
Take and drink.
This is my blood.
Do this in memory of me.
It is simple and clear.
If we repent of sin, if we simply do not resist God, but live, act and work as he commands, then he will make known in us, in and through our lives:
his power and authority,
his kingdom of freedom, salvation and holiness,
his Word and his Holy Spirit.
Be it done unto us according to his Word!