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From: Luke 10:1-12, 17-20

The Mission of the Seventy Disciples


[1] After this the Lord appointed seventy others, and sent them on ahead of Him,
two by two, into every town and place where He Himself was about to come. [2]
And He said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; pray there-
fore the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest. [3] Go your way;
behold, I send you out as lambs in the midst of wolves. [4] Carry no purse, no
bag, no sandals; and salute no one on the road. [5] Whatever house you enter,
first say, ‘Peace be to this house!’ [6] And if a son of peace is there, your peace
shall rest upon him; but if not, it shall return to you. [7] And remain in the same
house, eating and drinking what they provide, for the laborer deserves his wages;
do not go from house to house. [8] Whenever you enter a town and they receive
you, eat what is set before you; [9] heal the sick in it and say to them, “The King-
dom of God has come near to you.’ [10] But whenever you enter a town and they
do not receive you, go into its streets and say, [11] ‘Even the dust of your town
that clings to our feet, we wipe off against you; nevertheless know this, that the
Kingdom of God has come near.’ [12] I tell you, it shall be more tolerable on that
day for Sodom than for that town.”

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Commentary:

1-12. Those who followed our Lord and received a calling from Him (cf. Luke 9:57-
62) included many other disciples in addition to the Twelve (cf. Mark 2:15). We do
not know who most of them were; but undoubtedly some of them were with Him
all along, from when Jesus was baptized by John up to the time of His ascension
—for example, Joseph called Barrabas, and Matthias (cf. Acts 1:21-26). We can
also include Cleopas and his companion, whom the risen Christ appeared to on
the road to Emmaus (cf. Luke 24:13-35).

From among these disciples, our Lord chooses seventy-two for a special assign-
ment. Of them, as of the Apostles (cf. Luke 9:1-5), He demands total detachment
and complete abandonment to divine providence.

From Baptism onwards every Christian is called by Christ to perform a mission.
Therefore, the Church, in our Lord’s name, “makes to all the laity an earnest ap-
peal in the Lord to give a willing, noble and enthusiastic response to the voice of
Christ, who at this hour is summoning them more pressingly, and to the urging
of the Holy Spirit. The younger generation should feel this call to be addressed
in a special way to themselves; they should welcome it eagerly and generously.
It is the Lord Himself, by this Council, who is once more inviting all the laity to
unite themselves to Him ever more intimately, to consider His interests as their
own (cf. Philippians 2:5), and to join in His mission as Savior. It is the Lord who
is again sending them into every town and every place where He Himself is to
come (cf. Luke 10:1). He sends them on the Church’s apostolate, an apostolate
that is one yet has different forms and methods, an apostolate that must all the
time be adapting itself to the needs of the moment; He sends them on an apos-
tolate where they are to show themselves His cooperators, doing their full share
continually in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord their labor cannot be
lost (cf. 1 Corinthians 15:58)” (Vatican II, “Apostolicam Actuositatem”, 33).

3-4. Christ wants to instill apostolic daring into His disciples; this is why He says,
“I send you out”, which leads St. John Chrysostom to comment: “This suffices to
give us encouragement, to give us confidence and to ensure that we are not afraid
of our assailants” (”Hom. on St. Matthew”, 33). The Apostles’ and disciples’ bold-
ness stemmed from their firm conviction that they were on a God-given mission:
they acted, as Peter the Apostle confidently explained to the Sanhedrin, in the
name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, “for there is no other name under heaven by
which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).

“And the Lord goes on,” St. Gregory the Great adds, “Carry no purse, no bag, no
sandals; and salute no one on the road.’ Such should be the confidence the prea-
cher places in God that even if he is not provided with the necessities of life, he
is convinced that they will come his way. This will ensure that worry about provi-
ding temporal things for himself does not distract him from providing others with
eternal things” (”In Evangelia Homiliae”, 17). Apostolate calls for generous self-
surrender which leads to detachment; therefore, Peter, following our Lord’s com-
mandment, when the beggar at the Beautiful Gate asked him for alms (Acts 3:2-
3), said, “I have no silver or gold” (”ibid.”, 3:6), “not so as to glory in his poverty”,
St. Ambrose points out, “but to obey the Lord’s command. It is as if he were sa-
ying, ‘You see in me a disciple of Christ, and you ask me for gold? He gave us
something much more valuable than gold, the power to act in His name. I do not
have what Christ did not give me, but I do have what He did give me: In the name
of Jesus Christ, arise and walk’ (cf. Acts 3:6)” (”Expositio Evangelii Sec. Lucam,
in loc”.). Apostolate, therefore, demands detachment from material things and it
also requires us to be always available, for there is an urgency about apostolic
work.

“And salute no one on the road”: “How can it be”, St. Ambrose asks himself,
“that the Lord wishes to get rid of a custom so full of kindness? Notice, however,
that He does not just say, ‘Do not salute anyone’, but adds, ‘on the road.’ And
there is a reason for this.

“He also commanded Elisha not to salute anyone he met, when He sent him to
lay his staff on the body of the dead child (2 Kings 4:29): He gave him this order
so as to get him to do this task without delay and effect the raising of the child,
and not waste time by stopping to talk to any passerby he met. Therefore, there
is no question of omitting good manners to greet others; it is a matter of remo-
ving a possible obstacle in the way of service; when God commands, human
considerations should be set aside, at least for the time being. To greet a per-
son is a good thing, but it is better to carry out a divine instruction which could
easily be frustrated by a delay (”ibid.”).

6. Everyone is “a son of peace” who is disposed to accept the teaching of the
Gospel which brings with it God’s peace. Our Lord’s recommendation to His di-
sciples to proclaim peace should be a constant feature of all the apostolic ac-
tion of Christians: “Christian apostolate is not a political program or a cultural
alternative. It implies the spreading of good, ‘infecting’ others with a desire to
love, sowing peace and joy” (St. J. Escriva, “Christ Is Passing By”, 124).

Feeling peace in our soul and in our surroundings is an unmistakable sign that
God is with us, and a fruit of the Holy Spirit (cf. Galatians 5:22): “Get rid of these
scruples that deprive you of peace. What takes away your peace of soul cannot
come from God. When God comes to you, you will feel the truth of those gree-
tings: My peace I give to you..., peace I leave you..., peace be with you..., and
you will feel it even in the midst of troubles” (St. J. Escriva, “The Way”, 258).

7. Our Lord clearly considered poverty and detachment a key feature in an apos-
tle. But He was aware of His disciples’ material needs and therefore stated the
principle that apostolic ministry deserves its recompense. Vatican II reminds us
that we all have an obligation to contribute to the sustenance of those who ge-
nerously devote themselves to the service of the Church: “Completely devoted
as they are to the service of God in the fulfillment of the office entrusted to them,
priests are entitled to receive a just remuneration. For ‘the laborer deserves his
wages’ (Luke 10:7), and ‘the Lord commanded that they who proclaim the Gos-
pel should get their living by the Gospel’ (1 Corinthians 9:14). For this reason, in-
sofar as provision is not made from some other source for the just remuneration
of priests, the faithful are bound by a real obligation of seeing to it that the neces-
sary provision for a decent and fitting livelihood for the priests are available” (Va-
tican II, “Presbyterorum Ordinis”, 20).

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


4 posted on 10/03/2012 8:31:17 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation
Scripture readings taken from the Jerusalem Bible, published and copyright © 1966, 1967 and 1968 by Darton, Longman & Todd

Readings at Mass


First reading Job 19:21-27 ©
Job said:
Pity me, pity me, you, my friends,
  for the hand of God has struck me.
Why do you hound me down like God,
  will you never have enough of my flesh?
Ah, would that these words of mine were written down,
  inscribed on some monument
with iron chisel and engraving tool,
  cut into the rock for ever.
This I know: that my Avenger lives,
  and he, the Last, will take his stand on earth.
After my awaking, he will set me close to him,
  and from my flesh I shall look on God.
He whom I shall see will take my part:
  these eyes will gaze on him and find him not aloof.

Psalm Psalm 26:7-9,13-14 ©
I am sure I shall see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living.
O Lord, hear my voice when I call;
  have mercy and answer.
Of you my heart has spoken:
  ‘Seek his face.’
I am sure I shall see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living.
It is your face, O Lord, that I seek;
  hide not your face.
Dismiss not your servant in anger;
  you have been my help.
I am sure I shall see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living.
I am sure I shall see the Lord’s goodness
  in the land of the living.
Hope in him, hold firm and take heart.
  Hope in the Lord!
I am sure I shall see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living.

Gospel Acclamation Mt4:4
Alleluia, alleluia!
Man does not live on bread alone,
but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.
Alleluia!
Or Mk1:15
Alleluia, alleluia!
The kingdom of God is close at hand:
repent and believe the Good News.
Alleluia!

Gospel Luke 10:1-12 ©
The Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them out ahead of him, in pairs, to all the towns and places he himself was to visit. He said to them, ‘The harvest is rich but the labourers are few, so ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers to his harvest. Start off now, but remember, I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. Carry no purse, no haversack, no sandals. Salute no one on the road. Whatever house you go into, let your first words be, “Peace to this house!” And if a man of peace lives there, your peace will go and rest on him; if not, it will come back to you. Stay in the same house, taking what food and drink they have to offer, for the labourer deserves his wages; do not move from house to house. Whenever you go into a town where they make you welcome, eat what is set before you. Cure those in it who are sick, and say, “The kingdom of God is very near to you.” But whenever you enter a town and they do not make you welcome, go out into its streets and say, “We wipe off the very dust of your town that clings to our feet, and leave it with you. Yet be sure of this: the kingdom of God is very near.” I tell you, on that day it will not go as hard with Sodom as with that town.’

5 posted on 10/03/2012 8:44:43 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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