THE SERVANT GENERAL
THE NEW EVANGELIZATION
RESPONDING TO THE CALL
October 18, 2012
2 Timothy 4:9-17
There is much we can learn from today’s readings regarding
the call to the New Evangelization.
is the great need for our participation. “The harvest
is abundant but the laborers are few” (Lk 10:2a). The
New Evangelization is a call for all Catholics, especially
the laity, to participate in the task of proclaiming the gospel.
There is a hunger and thirst for God in every created soul,
and many hearts and minds are already being prepared and are
ripe for the harvest. If they are not harvested, then they
will be lost to cults, sects, the New Age, and fundamentalist
Protestants. The potential laborers are not few but very very
many. They are the 99.9% of Catholics who are the laity. Unfortunately,
very few Christians, especially Catholics, actually know that
they are supposed to be evangelizers. Those who have met Christ
and are starting to live Christ must actually share Christ.
for those who decide to evangelize, they must be aware of
the urgency of the task and the single-mindedness needed to
accomplish it. They are to “greet no one along the way”
(Lk 10:4b). They are to focus. They are not to be distracted.
They are not to dilly-dally. They are to “carry no money
bag, no sack, no sandals” (Lk 10:4a). They are not to
be held back by a lack of money or provisions. They need not
prepare for every contingency but are to trust fully in God
they are to be aware that they engage in spiritual warfare.
“Go on your way; behold, I am sending you like lambs
among wolves.” (Lk 10:3). We are the Lord’s lambs,
His flock. But we are sent forth from the safety of the sheepfold
and into the world, to help gather the scattered flock, and
in the world we will encounter wolves.
some wolves have already infiltrated the sheepfold. These
are the dissidents who profess to be Catholics but who do
not accept important teachings of the Catholic Church, such
as on contraception, abortion and homosexuality. These are
also lay leaders who wreak disunity and dissension in the
body, through maligning their brethren, or disobedience to
bishops, or causing scandal through unchristian acts. Paul
had painful experiences of such. There was Demas who was “enamored
of the present world” and Alexander who did him “a
great deal of harm” (2 Tm 4:10a,14a).
How do we go about the call to the New Evangelization?
always look to God for whatever we need. “But the Lord
stood by me and gave me strength” (2 Tm 4:17a). God
will defend us, strengthen us, protect us, and grant us everything
we need for the mission, since it is He Himself who sends
us. “The Lord is trustworthy in every word, and faithful
in every work.” (Ps 145:13b). Even in facing a powerful
enemy, the evil one who seeks to devour us, it is God who
helps us. “And I was rescued from the lion’s mouth.”
(2 Tm 4:17c).
need to persevere not only through trials and hardships, but
also through infidelities and even betrayal of brethren. Demas
deserted Paul, and at his first defense everyone also deserted
him (2 Tm 4:16). We must not be discouraged but plod on. Even
if we are the last person standing. We must always just look
to God, who is just and true. “You, Lord, are just in
all your ways, faithful in all your works.” (Ps 145:17).
It is Him whom we serve, and Him whom we want to please. God
will always be there for us, especially in our suffering and
pain. “The Lord supports all who are falling and raises
up all who are bowed down.” (Ps 145:14).
We have been given the great privilege of being proclaimers
of the gospel of the kingdom of God. That is what we need
to do. “Whatever town you enter .... say to them, ‘The
kingdom of God is at hand for you.’” (Lk 10:8a,9b).
And know that God depends on you. Your response is crucial,
“so that through (you) the proclamation might be completed
and all the Gentiles might hear it.” (2 Tm 17b).
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