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Thursday, February 6, 1997

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Sts. Paul Miki & Companions


Hebrews 12:18-19, 21-24
Psalm 48
Mark 6:7-13

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"we're on a journey"

"He instructed them to take nothing on their journey." —Mark 6:8

Today, Christians love to talk about being on a journey. They see prayer, marriage, morality, etc. as journeys. Sometimes this idea of journeying is put forth to justify all sorts of sinful behavior. After all, we haven't arrived yet; we're just on a journey.

However, the concept of the Christian life as a journey is legitimate, although often misapplied. The chosen people of Israel, Jesus and His apostles, and the early Church were repeatedly journeying. Nevertheless, Jesus does not use the idea of journeying as an excuse for sin but as a call to gospel poverty, evangelization, and much more. Jesus "instructed them to take nothing on their journey but a walking stick — no food, no traveling bag, not a coin in the purses in their belts" (Mt 6:8). "With that they went off, preaching the need of repentance. They expelled many demons, anointed the sick with oil, and worked many cures" (Mk 6:12-13).

When we think of journeying, we shouldn't think of making excuses; rather, we should think of gospel poverty, preaching, repentance, deliverance, and healing. We're on a journey. This means carrying the cross in the power of the Spirit for the building of God's kingdom.

Prayer:  Father, may I finish the journey and enter the promised land.

Promise:  "No, you have drawn near to Mount Zion and the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to myriads of angels in festal gathering, to the assembly of the first-born enrolled in heaven, to God the Judge of all, to the spirits of just men made perfect, to Jesus, the Mediator of a new covenant." — Heb 12:22-24

Praise:  One of the Japanese martyrs, St. Philip of Jesus, had been a rambunctious youth. A family friend declared that Philip's chances of becoming a saint were as good as the dried-up fig tree in his garden sprouting leaves. On the day young Philip was martyred, the withered tree burst forth with abundant leaves.

Reference:  (For related teaching, order our leaflet, Mission Impossible.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, August 1, 1996


Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 6, 1996