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Homily

NOTES ON MARK 6:30-30: THE MINISTRY OF COMPASSION AND ITS FUNCTIONAL PATTERN OF IT
By Augustine Agwulonu
Sat, 06 Feb 2016

NOTES ON MARK 6:30-30: THE MINISTRY OF COMPASSION AND ITS FUNCTIONAL PATTERN

What was the reason why Jesus's disciples made a recourse to him when they returned from their apostolic practices? Was it because they recorded some successes? How about if they had failed? Would they still have been eager and proud to fall back to Jesus?

Jesus's disciples went out, in obedience to their Master, to preach the Good News. They returned with testimonies to share with Jesus, which underscored the fruitfulness of the Good News, as proclaimed by them.
Jesus's disciples "gathered" and "reported" to him. Jesus is the one who commanded the sending, the mission and the ministry of his disciples. These friends of Jesus, on their part, realized that they must account to Jesus. He was the origin and the one to receive the fruit of their evangelical assignment.

Have you ever observed the wasps, or have you been stung by them? Did you notice that those stinging insects must fly back to their colony after each sting? So, it is in the nature of the wasps to take a quick flight to their base in order to draw a new strength to sting again. This can be an illustration for the pattern of action by those who are called by Jesus to engage in his evangelical ministry. Jesus's disciples must constantly return to Jesus with the results of their missionary assignments. In doing this, they draw new strength and renew their spirit for the continued ministry of compassion. Jesus must always play the regulating role in our evangelical ministry and missionary sending.

And this was exactly what Jesus did in the case of his disciples, as they reported to him all that they did and achieved during their evangelical outing. Jesus invited them to go off to a deserted place to rest. Jesus's compassion extends to both the preachers and the hearers of the Gospel.

Jesus sought for some place of rest for his disciples. But their search for rest ended with Jesus's compassion moving him to begin teaching the people again. The reason for this change was because the people were like sheep without a shepherd. In Jesus, the Master himself, we can find rest for our souls. The ministry of compassion knows no bounds. It can be purely emergency service. The worker in Jesus's vineyard can only rest, when the ministry of compassion has been fully completed!

Today, we celebrate the martyrdom of Paul Miki and his companions. Martyrdom was their way gathering around Jesus to give the report about their ministry of compassion.  In turn Jesus invited them to come and take their rest. He became their rest forever! 

 

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