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October Mission Month: A personal Reflection


 Every now and then we go back to the blazing, compelling reason why we left everything or stopped wandering and began to follow Him.  The very reasons that make us now fools or nobodies or ministers or famous; why we chose the road less travelled for adventure or for dutiful service.

My mind goes back to the months in the Nineties which I call the year of the Readings of calls to follow Him; repeated calls to leave home, to embark on some tasks, to be with Him and to pray.  My mind never forgets those increasing captivating words: You receive without charge, give without charge…  And the hymn Hark the voice of Jesus crying, who will go and work today? Fields are white and harvest waiting, who will bear the sheaves away?

These made sense because the missionaries before us did give our poor, sick, hope-less, villages and families so much without charge.

And every Eucharistic celebration or Formation programme is aptly seen in the eyes of Mother Teresa and St Augustine:

The privilege that we have to adore Him every day is one of His greatest gifts. If you have a clean heart, you will be able always to see that wonderful connection between the Bread of Life and the broken body of Christ in the poor.” Mother Teresa

At a grand table you have sat; now carefully consider what has been put before you, since it is your duty to prepare a similar meal… that table is great where the Lord of the table is himself the meal.  No one feeds guests with himself as food, but this is exactly what the Lord Christ does; he himself is the host who invites; he himself is the food and the drink. St Augustine, Divine Office 26th September.

But for the grace of God, I/we would be on the streets, if not in prison or homeless, jobless, schoolless, hungry, restless, hopeless, merciless!

That is why looking back at our past, present, and future ministries, it is begging the question who do we feed and serve, Christ in the poor or ourselves or our loved ones?

That is why it is so fulfilling to hear the doorbell ten to twenty times a day by the homeless in our parish and community, the hungry, the strangers, the stranded.  And to glimpse their plight and plague, to dare to relate to their predicament even for ten to thirty seconds; to give them a cold or hot drink, and something to eat from our five loaves and two fish.

It is undeniable that we are rich, dives, in resources and hopefully in mercy – for we receive without charge. And we are equally poor, Lazarus’, in virtues and in graces.

Thank you, Jesus. Continue to multiply the little we have to offer the needy on our streets and missions, from our nothingness and our inadequacies.  Raise us all, beggars like and with you to the heavenly banquet.  Help us to have the right wedding garments of love not hatred, of sensitivity nor resentment, of stewardship not dictatorship, of loved sinners transformed by your daily graces. 

Bless us as we celebrate and recommit ourselves during the Month of Mission.

Emmanuel Mbeh.

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