If you asked Jesus what he did while on earth, I believe he would say, “preached and healed.”Those were his missions. He had good news to share and a longing to convince his listeners of the truth of this gospel of love and freedom. He was moved because he saw them like sheep without a shepherd. The gospels are nothing other than documentation of Jesus’ efforts to preach the gospel!
Paul shared Christ’s ardor. He was entrusted with preaching to the Gentiles the truth of the Gospel, and he did all he could to convince them of his message. He says he became all things to all, to save at least some. He worked hard during the day so he could pay his own way and offer his message for free. He adapted himself to his audience—their customs and ways of thinking—so they wouldn’t take offense at him, closing their hearts to his message.
How many missionaries have used this same approach? Just think of the French Jesuits Sts. Jean de Brébeuf and Isaac Jogues of the Great Lakes region, St. Junípero Serra in the West, or Mother Cabrini serving European immigrants on the East Coast. They learned new languages, ate new foods, and adopted new traditions to insert themselves into these cultures and share the gospel.They took a page out of Paul’s book, becoming all things to all to save at least some.
We are modern-day apostles and missionaries. Let’s take a page out of Paul’s book, and offer this gospel of hope and love to so many souls in need.
—Fr. Mark Haydu, LC