Pastor's Corner

2016 10-16 World Mission Sunday

Written by:

From our pastor, Father Neil Herlihy

World Mission Sunday is traditionally celebrated in the latter part of October.  It is a day set aside for Catholics throughout the world to publicly recommit themselves to the Church’s missionary activity through prayer and sacrifice.  As we know, evangelization is very important to Our Holy Father Pope Francis.  As reported by Vatican Radio, he said that the command of Jesus to preach the gospel to all nations has not ceased.  He stated that World Mission Sunday calls on the faithful to go out into the world “…as missionary disciples, each generously offering their talents, creativity, wisdom and experience in order to bring the message of God’s tenderness and compassion to the entire human family.”  He reminded us that, “By virtue of the missionary mandate, the Church cares for those who do not know the Gospel, because she wants everyone to be saved and experience the Lord’s love.”

Our Bishops remind us that Church leaders “… should encourage their local communities to assist in the mission of the Church in spreading the gospel.”  As previously mentioned, following the example of the disciples, we are challenged to be witnesses to the Good News of Jesus Christ and to get personally involved in living the Gospel message despite potential risks and difficulties involving engagement with secular sectors of our society.  As Catholics, we are challenged to avoid the real temptation to get too socially comfortable with the values of the world and in the process compromise our spiritual integrity.  As people of prayer, we can personally spread the gospel and Christian values through our involvement in such events as the March for Life, the World Day of Prayer for Peace and the Eucharistic Congress.  We can also spread these values through our involvement with the Saint Vincent DePaul Society, Catholic Charities, and other organizations which encourage Christian outreach. We can assist in the building of chapels, churches, and schools in mission territories.  In addition, we can also spread the Gospel message by challenging our civil leaders to enact laws that promote Catholic social teaching, especially in areas concerning the life of the unborn, marriage, and the family. 

 Pope Francis also stated that, “All peoples and cultures have a right to receive the message of salvation which is God’s gift to every person.”  As we reflect on these words, and as we celebrate World Mission Sunday, we are invited to reach out to those in need and to embrace the missionary spirit of our precious faith as we continue to answer our call to discipleship.

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