Thursday of the Twenty-SixthWeek in Ordinary Time

How to live the mission  

After this the Lord appointed seventy (-two) others whom he sent ahead of him in pairs to every town and place he intended to visit. He said to them, “The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest. Go on your way; behold, I am sending you like lambs among wolves. Carry no money bag, no sack, no sandals; and greet no one along the way. Into whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace to this household.’  If a peaceful person  lives there, your peace will rest on him; but if not, it will return to you. Stay in the same house and eat and drink what is offered to you, for the laborer deserves his payment. Do not move about from one house to another. Whatever town you enter and they welcome you, eat what is set before you, cure the sick in it and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God is at hand for you.’ Whatever town you enter and they do not receive you, go out into the streets and say, ‘The dust of your town that clings to our feet, even that we shake off against you.’ Yet know this: the kingdom of God is at hand. I tell you, it will be more tolerable for Sodom on that day than for that town. Lk 10,1-12

Today, the Lord lays down certain rules which make up the decalogue of the mission and he defines the essential way to go and dress: “Carry no money bag, no sack, no sandals”and he says to be not not scattered: “and greet no one along the way”. He talks of the hospitality and of the food to be accepted with joy. He teaches how to greet when you enter a house: “Peace to this house”. He exorts the missionary to the gratitude for what is given: “eat and drink what is offered to you”. And, finally, speaking of the deep relationships which need to be established with the people: “Do not move about from one house to another”. Pondering on the today’s gospel, we must realize that the way by which we live and we travel, often aimed to the implementation of projects of different nature, is indeed planned by the Lord, who uses it to send us where he wants. Many years ago, when I had the opportunity to cooperate with several laboratories of high fashion in Florence, finding there the fragrance of the fabric of the grandmother Betta, who was a ladies’ tailor, I never imagined that this would have been the beginning of a deep communion with new sisters in the faith. Gradually, along with the comments on the collections of the models, we began to talk about the Lord and a desire to pray together was immediately born. Today, although the reason which brought us together does no longer exist, we meet again to pray with Anna, Maria Rosa, Paola and Rina, sharing moments of joy and of proofs, because the Lord has transformed our friendship, born during the fashion shows, in a fraternal communion, as only the Lord is able to do.

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