THE SERVANT GENERAL
THE NEW EVANGELIZATION
ON TO NINEVEH
“This generation is an evil generation” (Lk 11:29b),
so says Jesus of the people of his time. What was true then
is also true today, even more so. A tsunami of evil overwhelms
the whole world. And among evil people are those who profess
to be Christians, such as Catholic dissidents who are for
abortion and same-sex unions but who claim to be devout Catholics!
And unlike the evil generation of Jesus’ time that sought
a sign (Lk 11:29c), today’s evil generation does not
even seek signs. They have rejected the truth, they have opposed
authentic Church teaching, they have aligned with dark forces
to try to weaken or even destroy the Church from without and
tragic. The “queen of the south .... came from the ends
of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon” (Lk 11:31a).
The “men of Nineveh .... at the preaching of Jonah ....
repented” (Lk 11:32a). But as Jesus himself says, “there
is something greater than Solomon here .... and there is something
greater than Jonah here.” (Lk 11:31b,32b). Jesus has
already come into the world and proclaimed the good news of
the kingdom of God. We have the wisdom from on high, including
centuries-old wisdom of the saints and the Church. The missionary
Church has preached the good news to the ends of the earth
for two millennia.
of the world’s population has become Christian, but
the majority of this one-third needs to be re-evangelized.
Then there is the rest of the two-thirds that need to be evangelized.
People need to turn away from evil, to repent. Given the tsunami
of evil, given the turning away of Christians from authentic
faith, given the dissent of Catholics from the Magisterium,
the situation seems hopeless. But that is also how it seemed
with Nineveh. But that evil generation repented! Today we
can only try, and try hard, to proclaim the gospel of repentance
and salvation. Then we trust in God and look to His signs
and wonders in our ministry. “Just as Jonah became a
sign to the Ninevites, so will the Son of Man be to this generation.”
are in the end times. Jonah announced: “Forty days more
and Nineveh shall be overthrown” (Jon 3:4b). We probably
have more than forty days left before the fearsome end when
the Lord returns once again. But that is not to become complacent,
but to rejoice that we have more time with which to do our
work of evangelization.
So we look to the world that is the new Nineveh, and we hear
the word of the Lord come to us: “Set out for the great
city of Nineveh, and announce to it the message that I will
tell you.” (Jon 3:2). Let us not be disobedient. Let
us not be slow to respond. Let us not be preoccupied by lesser
priorities. Let us “set out for Nineveh, in accord with
the word of the Lord.” (Jon 3:3a).
Surprisingly, “the people of Nineveh believed God; they
proclaimed a fast and all of them, great and small, put on
sackcloth.” (Jon 3:5). God turned away from his blazing
wrath and they did not perish (Jon 3:9). Perhaps this evil
generation today will do so as well.
The New Evangelization for the new Nineveh!