September 18, 2020 (readings)
- Friday of the Twenty-Fourth Week in Ordinary Time
- Carey Boyzuck
Afterward he journeyed from one town and village to another, preaching and proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God. Accompanying him were the Twelve and some women who had been cured of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out, Joanna, the wife of Herod’s steward Chuza, Susanna, and many others who provided for them out of their resources.
Opening Prayer: Dear Lord, thank you for teaching me. Thank you for healing me. Thank you for saving me. Help me to hear your word and open myself to what you are teaching me in this encounter with you.
1. Spreading the Good News: Jesus and the Twelve spent most of their time spreading the good news of the kingdom of God. They were outstanding witnesses to Jesus’s love. In our day, people who are truly Christ-followers, who are excited about their faith, also can’t help but draw people to Christ. We evangelize by living our lives in a principled, joyful, Christ-centered way. We help others encounter Christ by sharing our own experiences of having received Christ’s mercy. When we speak passionately about these things, we spread the good news and Jesus’s modern apostles.
2. Grateful Stewards: What a beautiful model of stewardship we see in the women who provided for Jesus and the Twelve. “Stewardship is the grateful response of a Christian disciple who recognizes and receives God’s gifts and shares these gifts in love of God and neighbor” (Catholic Diocese of Wichita, Kansas). These women were not obligated to provide for the Twelve. They were not expecting anything in return for their stewardship. They gave of their resources out of love for Christ and love for the people that Christ was healing and saving. A grateful heart is a prerequisite for authentic stewardship.
3. Evangelizing Saint: St. Mary Magdalene was a grateful steward because she had been healed by Christ from seven demons and had been forgiven for her sins. Her love was so great that she bravely accompanied St. John and the Blessed Virgin Mary (see John 19:25) to the foot of the cross. Her fidelity was rewarded. She was given the title, “Apostle to the Apostles” as the first to witness the Resurrection. She told St. Peter and the others on that Easter morning, “I have seen the Lord” (John 20:18). May we imitate St. Mary Magdalene—the very first person to spread the good news of Christ’s Resurrection.
Conversing with Christ: Dear Jesus, I want others to experience you as I have experienced you. Grant me the fortitude I need to share with others how you have worked in my life. May I proclaim you with vulnerability and sincerity. May I always serve you out of a grateful response to your love.
Resolution: Lord, today by your grace I will look for an opportunity to say your name aloud to someone I meet, in imitation of Mary Magdalene.
For Further Reflection: Watch this video about evangelizing the baptized through parish missions: New Evangelization: 3 Step Method. Also, check out these resources on the New Evangelization from the USCCB: New Evangelization Toolkit.
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