MISSION SENDING EUCHARISTIC CELEBRATION

Today, Saturday, November 28, 2009, the Euntes Mission Formation and Spirituality course came to an end with the solemn MISSION SENDING EUCHARISTIC CELEBRATION in which twenty-four Missionaries from seven different countries of Asia and the Pacific received their Diplomas and their Mission Crosses. The Mass, concelebrated by Father Gianni Re, PIME Regional Superior, Father Nevio Vigano, PIME, Parish Priest of Sinunuc and Father Angel Calvo, CMF, Euntes Pastoral Consultant, was presided by Father Giulio F. Mariani, PIME, EMC Director, who gave the following homily.      (Special Readings for the day: Acts 2:1- 11; 1 John 1: 1- 4; John 20: 19- 23).

Our countdown is over. The day we all have been waiting for is here. We have been together for the past five months and it’s time to go…to reach out…That’s the reality of the Euntes Mission Center.

When we arrived last July 1, though we were so different because of our different cultures, traditions, languages and personal experiences, we set out on a journey together and slowly grew into the Euntes family, brothers and sisters in the same mission of wanting to spread the Good News of the love of God, and go and tell the story of Jesus with our words and our life.

Meeting the various Resource Persons week after week, going from one module to another, through personal study, reflection and prayer, struggling at times with our fears and confusion, we were actually more and more conquered and fascinated by the person of Christ, the Missionary of the Father, and were attracted by His story…and now we are longing to go and proclaim that very story with a renewed spirit  and commitment to our brothers and sisters, especially the poor / the people in the margins.

In fact, this final day in our course is not just another day…it is our Pentecost Day, the day in which the Holy Spirit in faith comes with the power of a strong driving wind filling the whole house – our Euntes community – as we proclaimed in today’s first reading. Over the past five months we have been the disciples in the Cenacle, gathered together with Mary, the Mother of Jesus, and we know that through all we have done and experienced,  ‘tongues as of fire’…a renewed passion for God and for the human family have come to rest on our minds and hearts.

The coming of the Spirit on the first Pentecost Day marked the beginning of the Church and its mission to the world, a mission that two thousand years after being entrusted to the Church is still very far from completion. In the words of the late Pope John Paul II an overall view of the human race shows that this mission is still only beginning and that we must commit ourselves to its service. (RM 1)

We are now ready to reach out and celebrate the miracle of Pentecost in our day because we have been filled with the Holy Spirit who has enabled us to speak the universal language of love that can be understood by all people from every nation under heaven…the language of peace, justice, compassion, solidarity, dialogue with and respect of cultures, religions and the integrity of creation.

The promise of Jesus to the Twelve on the day of His Ascension comes to mind: “you will receive power when the holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, throughout Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1: 8)

And it is Jesus Himself who impels us to go for we heard the words he spoke to his Apostles on the evening of that first day of the week…are really meant also for each one of us.

In the last five months in our daily Eucharistic celebrations Jesus came and stood in our midst saying to us: “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the holy Spirit”.

Jesus does not send a book, a Catechism or not even the Bible; He chooses and sends real people like each one of us here with our talents, our good qualities but also with all our human limitations and fragilities, inviting us not to be afraid and counting only on His constant love and the power of the Good News!

How is it possible for us to remember all that we have heard, learned and most of all experienced over the past five months? Yesterday you presented the synthesis of the whole course. How will you remember all your metaphors, your key words, and will you be faithful to them becoming what you believe? Today’s second reading offers the summary of what we are called to be and do in our mission.

Let me read that page once again: What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we looked upon and touched with our hands concerns the Word of life– for the life was made visible; we have seen it and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was made visible to us– what we have seen and heard we proclaim now to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; for our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. We are writing this so that our joy may be complete.

 

Euntes…go, then, reach out and show forth the Asian face of Jesus to all. The Spirit be with you!

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