Pastor’s Weekly Message 7-11-21

Dear Friend of Carmel Mission,
In the Gospel today Jesus sends the disciples off on their first missionary endeavor with the instruction, “take nothing for the journey.” (Mark 6:8)  Imagine setting off on a trip with no suitcase, no money, no iPhone! The game plan is to walk from place to place and rely on the kindness of strangers to house and feed you. Would you undertake such a journey? I can honestly say I would have some trepidation! Such arrangements may have been somewhat more common in Jesus’ time, but it was still an enormous leap of faith on the part of the disciples.
There is a practice in our Catholic tradition called Lectio Divina. It is a way of reading the scriptures that immerses all our senses in the Gospel stories. We imagine ourselves inside the action, from different perspectives, and then approach God in prayer to open our hearts and minds to His Word. As I was applying this practice to today’s Gospel I was struck with a thought. Imagine yourself as one of the people that the disciples approach for support on their journey. If someone you had never met knocked on your door, wanting to share their faith, which you had never heard of, and then asked for dinner and a place to spend the night, what would you say?
From both perspectives, an enormous generosity of spirit was required. The disciples’ generous hearts compelled them to undertake such a perilous endeavor because they urgently wanted to spread the Good News. They were willing to risk everything, endure any privation, to ensure that everyone had the opportunity to know of God’s great love. Those who not only listened to and embraced their message, but offered material support to strangers, displayed an equal measure of generosity.
Our founder and first pastor, St. Junipero, had this spirit of courageous generosity and it is my goal that this same spirit informs all our actions as a community of faith here at Carmel Mission.
I wish you and your loved ones continued blessings of good health, new hope and safe journeys,

Fr. Paul

Please take a moment to read our Carmel Mission Weekly Bulletin.

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