Word of the day
Reading of the day
A Reading from the Acts of the Apostles
Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly and said,
"It was necessary that the word of God be spoken to you first,
but since you reject it
and condemn yourselves as unworthy of eternal life,
we now turn to the Gentiles.
For so the Lord has commanded us,
I have made you a light to the Gentiles,
that you may be an instrument of salvation
to the ends of the earth."
The Gentiles were delighted when they heard this
and glorified the word of the Lord.
All who were destined for eternal life came to believe,
and the word of the Lord continued to spread
through the whole region.
Gospel of the day
From the Gospel according to Luke
The Lord Jesus appointed seventy-two other disciples
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.'"
Words of the Holy Father
The true preacher is one who knows he is weak, who knows he cannot defend himself from himself. The emissary “in the midst of wolves”, could object and ask, “but Lord, so they might eat me?”. And the answer is, “Go! This is the way”. And I believe in a most profound reflection by John Chrysostom: “if you do not go out as a lamb but go as a wolf among wolves, the Lord will not protect you; defend yourself on your own”. When the preacher believes he is too intelligent or when one who has the responsibility of issuing forth the Word of God tries to be sly” and thinks “I am getting along with these people”, then “it will end badly”, or “he will negotiate God’s Word with powerful and arrogant people”. (Santa Marta, 14 February 2017)