THE SERVANT GENERAL
THE NEW EVANGELIZATION
GREATER THAN SOLOMON AND JONAH
October 15, 2012
Today’s gospel: Luke 11:29-32
“This generation is an evil generation” (Lk 11:29b).
These words of Jesus are very appropriate for today’s
generation. There is unprecedented evil in the world. We see
the holocaust of the unborn, the incessant assault on marriage
and family, the attacks on faith and on our Catholic Church,
the rampaging of the culture of death upon the whole face
of the earth.
What is the solution? It is
massive evangelization. People need to meet Christ, live Christ
and share Christ. Now more than ever this is greatly possible.
The word of God has been preached since before Jesus, then
by Jesus, and now by us in the name of Jesus. But today we
have resources unknown in ancient days. And so today there
is the call to the New Evangelization.
Jonah was used by God to effectively preach repentance to
the Ninevites. Then the Son of Man came and it became God
Himself preaching repentance. Then Jesus sent us his Spirit
in order that we might preach repentance. First it was God
with Jonah, then God the Father and God the Son in Jesus,
now finally the Trinity in and through us. That is a much
greater force for evangelization.
Further, the queen of the
south “came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom
of Solomon” (Lk 11:31b), a wisdom that was a gift from
God. Then with Jesus, he himself is Wisdom personified. Now
we have the Spirit of truth who guides us to all truth, who
takes what is from Jesus and the Father (Jn 16:13-15). Today
indeed “there is something greater than Solomon here.”
Still further, “at the
preaching of Jonah they repented” (Lk 11:32b). But Jonah
was an inexperienced and reluctant preacher. At heart he did
not even want the Ninevites to repent. When he was successful
in his mission, he was displeased, angry and even wanted to
die. Jonah preached God’s message, then Jesus himself
became the message, and now we are equipped with God’s
own Spirit to proclaim salvation in Jesus. We have the Bible,
the Church, the catechism, and bountiful resources to support
the work of evangelization. Today indeed “there is something
greater than Jonah here.” (Lk 11:32c).
God has provided everything we need for the New Evangelization.
There are greater resources--electronic copies of the Bible,
Internet links to Catholic teachings and writings, the accumulated
wisdom of the Church through the ages. There are greater means--jet
travel to any part of the world, social media that can reach
millions in an instant, financial resources, networking among
God used a reluctant prophet.
Think what God can do with eager, zealous and committed evangelizers.
God gave Solomon wisdom. Think what God can do with one who
is similarly gifted with wisdom, which is a free gift of the
Holy Spirit (1 Cor 12:8a). God touched the hearts of the Ninevites
with one proclamation. Think what God can do to bring the
nations of the world to repentance, if only we too proclaim
the gospel to them.
The call to the New Evangelization
has been sounded. Let us respond.