Read this week's guidelines and be nourished as you journey with our Community in Cebu.
Create Evangelized and Evangelizing Communities
July 27 - August 2, 2020
THEME: CALLED TO FORM AND JOURNEY WITH A PEOPLE
General Objective: To be able to journey with the people the Lord entrusted to us and form them as apostles who will take our place.
Specific Objective: To extend our tents to win more apostles for Christ by creating evangelized and evangelizing communities in order to fulfill His desire that we can all be One in the Father and consequently bring God’s salvation to all.
As disciples, we are invited to journey with the people, to do the mission, and eventually to form apostles in the most creative way. We are encouraged to enlarge our tents of faith, patience, understanding, etc. to proclaim his words, and to pass on that divine experience to others as heirs of the Verbum Dei charism.
People in this pandemic are living in fear, bewilderment, and in disoriented manner that they are engulfed with uncertainties; and we are not exempted from this reality. We, disciples need to deal with our woundedness in most different way. In the homily of Pope Francis, in one of his homily said, “Go, do not be afraid, and serve”. Our life must be a blessing amidst of this pandemic and must be a pillar to allow others to encounter Jesus. Our life is chosen to pour life in this broken world. We need to open our mouth and go to the multitudes and evangelize people for them to see Jesus. Where are we? Why are we afraid to come out in the open to proclaim his words and evangelize others?
Exodus 10:12 – “Now go, I shall help you speak and instruct you what to say.”
This is the assurance God gave us. We may not have a trained tongue to proclaim the Word of God but we have the Holy Spirit to guide us. The Holy Spirit will help us resonate in proclaiming His words in our simple way. He will make us capable to speak, and will give us courage to accompany people towards him. Jesus is counting on you! The Church is counting on you! Our Verbum Dei Community is counting on you! Let us show our faith by announcing the gospel and forming apostles who, in turn will formed by doing and enabling others to also do the same.
The new evangelization calls for personal involvement on the part of every baptized. Every Christian is being challenged to actively engaged in creating an evangelized and evangelizing communities. Let us take wholeheartedly this journey together with the rest.
“If he can, so do I”
Mk 2:15-16 - Later on Jesus was having a meal in Levi’s house. A large number of tax collectors and other outcasts was following Jesus, and many of them joined him and his disciples at the table.
We are challenged to be creative and faithful heirs to the charism open to the movements of the Spirit towards creating an evangelized and evangelizing communities in the places where we are. Let us be like Jesus who is willing to take the risks in calling people to save them. He never withdrew nor renounces his hope on us. Let us not get discouraged when people turn their back on our invitation or whenever we speak and share his words to them.
How persistent am I in inviting others for them to have an encounter with Jesus? How firm are we to proclaim His words?
“I in you and I in Him”
Jn 17:21 – So that they may all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that they also may in us, that the world may believe that you sent me.
God calls us to be His hands, His eyes, and His ears united with the lost. It is His deepest desire that our lives are in tune with others. He chose us to reach out to the desolate, discouraged, and confused that they may witness God’s presence through our lives. We are His instruments to bring unity and uplift the lowly.
Do I bring hope to the lost and weary? Do I strive to evangelize the discouraged even if I am criticized and mocked?
(Feast of St. Martha)
“I can go the distance”
Mt 20:7 – They answered, ‘Because no one has hired us.’ He said to them, ‘You too go into my vineyard.’
Many of our brothers and sisters don’t know the purpose of their gifts and the true value of their lives, thus, consequently putting these to waste. This is why evangelization is so vital.
In what way do I nurture the gifts I received from God? Do I believe in my potential as a disciple that I can go further and enrich His vineyard?
(St. Peter Chrysologus, Bishop & Doctor)
“I am task to restore”
Is 54:1 – Raise a glad cry, you barren one who did not bear, break forth in jubilant song, you who were not in labor. For more numerous are the children of the deserted wife than the children of her who has a husband, says the Lord.
We became barren because we are distracted. Yet, disciples are task to restore the life of the people living in the desert. Jesus is counting on them to walk with the lost for them to see Him.
How often do I obey the voice of the spirit to accompany the people towards Him? Am I trying to transmit His message even in my simplest way?
(St. Ignatius of Loyola, Priest)
“I can bear fruit”
Act 14:21-22 – After they had proclaimed the good news to that city and made a considerable number of disciples, they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch. They strengthened the spirits of the disciples and exhorted them to persevere in the faith, saying, “It is necessary for us to undergo many hardships to enter the kingdom of God”.
VD STATUTES #38 – The proclamation of the Word of God, preceded and accompanied by prayer and witness of life, will always be the best means for the propagation of the faith. We will sow the good seed of the Word in all fields, trusting in the growth that God gives, knowing that the Word, like “the rain which falls from heaven will not return empty,” because certainly, “the Word of God is alive and effective and sharper than any two-edged sword.”
The Word of God has its power to disturb and change life. Yet, it needs human cooperation to bear fruit. We may find ourselves unworthy but the Holy Spirit will help us to be capable for the Word of God to have an impact on others even in our simple ways. Have faith!
What concrete actions I have made to make this Word of God alive and active in the eyes of others in this pandemic?
(St. Alphonsus Liguori, Bishop & Doctor)
“I can stretch beyond fears”
Is. 54:2-3 – Enlarge the space for your tent, spread out your tent cloths unsparingly; lengthen your ropes and make firm your stakes. For you shall spread abroad to the right and to the left; your descendants shall dispossess the nations and shall people the desolate cities.
IMVDMF #42 – The dedication of the VDMFa to the proclamation of the Kingdom of God, through life and words, results in the formation of Christian communities inserted in the world and in communion with the local Church. Following the example of St. Paul, we seek the formation and promotion of disciples who will contribute to the development and continuity of these communities of Christian life and mission.
Like a rubber band, we need to stretch our personalities to reach out to the desolate and the unfaithful. We are nourished as disciples not for ourselves but for people who lost sight in following Jesus. We are called to journey with them and make them capable also to journey with others.
How do I deal with people who are difficult to manage? Am I able to show them my faith and patience that they will emulate?
18th SUNDAY in ORDINARY TIME
1st Reading: Is 55:1-3
Resp Psalm: Ps 145:8-18
2nd Reading: Rm 8:35-39
Gospel: Mt 14:13-21