"We must always pray to the "master of the harvest ", that is God the Father, to send labourers to work in his field which is the world". The mission is based on prayer; which requires detachment and poverty; which brings peace and healing, which is not proselytism but proclamation and testimony.
Vatican City (AsiaNews) - "The international community cannot tolerate such serious events": this is the harsh condemnation expressed by Pope Francis for the bombing of migrants in Libya. He also ashed for "concerted and extensice efforts to organize humanitarian corridors" for migrants.
The Pope's concern for those forced to leave their homeland was expressed in an appeal after today's Angelus, when he recalled "also all the victims of the massacres that were recently carried out in Afghanistan, Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger".
Before the recitation of the Marian prayer, commenting on today's Gospel, Francis had highlighted how it contains the prayer for vocations and an exhortation to the mission. "Today's Gospel page (see Lk 10.1-12.17-20) - he told the 30 thousand people in St. Peter's Square - presents Jesus who sends seventy-two disciples on a mission, in addition to the twelve apostles. The number seventy two probably indicates all nations. In fact in the book of Genesis seventy-two different nations are mentioned (see 10,1-32). Thus this sending prefigures the mission of the Church to proclaim the Gospel to all peoples. Jesus said to those disciples: "The harvest is abundant, but the workers are few! Pray therefore the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest "(v. 2)".
"This request of Jesus is always valid. We must always pray to the "master of the harvest", that is God the Father, so that he sends labourers to work in His field which is the world. And each of us must do it with an open heart, with a missionary attitude; our prayer should not be limited only to our needs, our desires: a prayer is truly Christian if it also has a universal dimension ”.
"In sending the seventy-two disciples, Jesus gives them precise instructions, which express the characteristics of mission. The first - we have already seen -: pray; the second: go; and then: do not carry bag nor sack...; say: "Peace to this house" ... stay in that house ... Don't go from one house to another; heal the sick and tell 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.'(see verses 2-10). These imperatives show that the mission is based on prayer; that it is itinerant, it is not still; which requires detachment and poverty; which brings peace and healing, signs of the nearness of the Kingdom of God; that it is not proselytism but proclamation and testimony; and which also requires frankness and evangelical freedom to leave, highlighting the responsibility of having rejected the message of salvation, but without condemnations and curses ”.
"If lived in these terms, the mission of the Church will be characterized by joy. And how does this step end? "The seventy-two returned full of joy" (v. 17), the evangelist notes. This is not an ephemeral joy that comes from the success of the mission; on the contrary, it is a joy rooted in the promise that - says Jesus - "your names are written in heaven" (v. 20). With this expression he means the inner and indestructible joy that comes from the awareness of having been called by God to follow his Son. That is the joy of being his disciples. Each of us shoukd think of the name he received on the day of Baptism: that name is "written in heaven" in the heart of God the Father. And it is the joy of this gift that makes every disciple a missionary, one who walks in the company of the Lord Jesus, who learns from him to spend himself without reserve for others, free from himself and from his own possessions ".