Saturday of the First Week of Advent
Reading – Isaiah 30:19-21; 23-26
Responsorial Psalm – Psalm 146 (147): 1-6
“Blessed are all who wait for the Lord”
Gospel: Matthew: 9:35 – 10:1; 5-8
Matthew 9:37 – “The harvest is abundant, but the labourers are few”
Today’s Gospel from Saint Matthew is a portrait of the Church. It shows us what Jesus wants his followers to do and how to do it. We are a missionary Church. We are sent by the Lord to spread his word and do his work. The Christian Gospel is just not something that we are meant to cling to for our own benefit. Rather, it is like seed that we are meant to give away.
We do this work together, with others, in community. Ministers need people to support them, pray for them, talk to them, challenge them. Francis of Assisi had an experience of God and then, within months, gathered people around him; Dominic, from the beginning, had brothers in his work; and Mother Teresa attracted a number of her former students to join her in her mission. We don’t go it alone.
And prayer is not incidental to ministry. It is not decorative. It is the lifeblood of the Church’s efforts. Without it, nothing will succeed; without it, no ministers will come forward. At all points, pray, pray, pray.
Pray for the victims of natural disasters today.
With thanks to Holy Name of Mary Parish, Hunters Hill, who have supplied these daily Advent and Christmas 2021 reflections from their publication Daily Inspirations of Faith: A Season of Prayer – Advent to Epiphany 2021-22.