29th Sunday In Ordinary Time

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Dear Friends:

Today is Mission Sunday. Over one billion Catholics all over the world observe today as World Mission Sunday. This annual observance was instituted 83 years ago in 1926 by papal decree, issued by Pope Pius XI. Every year since then, the universal church had dedicated the month of October to reflection and prayer for the missions. On Mission Sunday Catholics gather to celebrate the Eucharist and to contribute to a collection for the work of evangelization around the world. It reminds us that we are one with the church around the world and that we are committed to carrying on the mission of Christ, however different our situation may be.

In his message for world mission Sunday, 2008 the present Pope Benedict VXI encouraged everyone to take renewed awareness of the urgent need to proclaim the gospel, in the Pauline year. This year (2009) the pope reminds us that “the goal of the Church’s mission is to illumine all people with the light of the gospel and exhorts all Christians to redouble their commitment to participate in the missionary activity, that is an essential component of the life of the Church.

The Church according to Vatican Council II is missionary in her very nature because Jesus Christ was the first missionary. God the Father sent his son into the world with a message of God’s love and salvation. Thus the evangelizing mission of the church is essentially the announcement of God’s love, mercy, forgiveness and salvation, as these are revealed to mankind through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The most powerful means of preaching Christ is by living a truly Christian life – a life with love, mercy, kindness, compassion and a spirit of forgiveness and service. Prayer is the second means of missionary work. Jesus said, “without me you can do nothing.” Therefore through prayer we participate in the mission of the Church. All missionary efforts also require Financial Support because the love of God can often be explained to the poor only by providing them with food, medicine and means of livelihood.

Let us therefore learn to appreciate our missionary obligation and support the church’s missionary activities by living truly Christian lives, by fervent prayer and by generous donations.

May God bless you all

Fr. Chris