07 July 2019. Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Reflection (Sem. Tristan Ralf Q. Pacheco)
“The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so, ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.” (cf. Luke 10:2)
At first, when I read these phrases I said to myself: Why did Jesus tell that to His disciples? He can send His laborers Himself. Why was there a need to tell His disciples to ask God to send laborers for His kingdom? Isn’t Jesus all powerful?
That statement is baffling. For most people, priesthood has this special nobility. We know that priests are “specially handpicked” and called by God from his people. It is not only that these priests are called by Jesus, but, they are fruits of prayers of the people.
It made me think about my own vocation (even considering the fact that I had a late response rather than a late call) and of why I am presently here in the seminary.
Since I entered the seminary, many of my friends and relatives are expressing that they are praying for me. Whenever I visited the parish during home weekends and vacations, people who knew me assured me of their prayers. It is really a source of happiness for me. Because I, being in the seminary, dreaming to be a priest one day, feel that I am in much need of prayers to persevere. And it is very consoling to know and hear from people that they are praying for me.
Even before my entrance in the seminary, I used to hear people whom I know in the parish telling me that they are praying that I may be a priest someday. Could this vocation be an answer to their prayers? And now, I am pursuing the less trodden path.
Going back to Jesus’ words in the Gospel. Isn’t God so good? How amazing Jesus is, to let us have a part in His work of calling men to become priests. Is it a clear manifestation of the mercy of God that He makes of us partners in His works for priesthood?
Is He waiting for our prayers because He Himself wants to send more laborers in His field?
Now, more than ever praying for vocation becomes meaningful for me.
The Gospel Today
Luke 10: 1 – 12, 17 – 20
At that time the Lord appointed seventy-two others
whom he sent ahead of him in pairs
to every town and place he intended to visit.
He said to them,
“The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few;
so ask the master of the harvest
to send out laborers for his harvest.
Go on your way;
behold, I am sending you like lambs among wolves.
Carry no money bag, no sack, no sandals;
and greet no one along the way.
Into whatever house you enter, first say,
‘Peace to this household.’
If a peaceful person lives there,
your peace will rest on him;
but if not, it will return to you.
Stay in the same house and eat and drink what is offered to you,
for the laborer deserves his payment.
Do not move about from one house to another.
Whatever town you enter and they welcome you,
eat what is set before you,
cure the sick in it and say to them,
‘The kingdom of God is at hand for you.’
Whatever town you enter and they do not receive you,
go out into the streets and say,
‘The dust of your town that clings to our feet,
even that we shake off against you.’
Yet know this: the kingdom of God is at hand.
I tell you,
it will be more tolerable for Sodom on that day than for that town.”
The seventy-two returned rejoicing, and said,
“Lord, even the demons are subject to us because of your name.”
Jesus said, “I have observed Satan fall like lightning from the sky.
Behold, I have given you the power to ‘tread upon serpents’ and scorpions
and upon the full force of the enemy and nothing will harm you. Nevertheless, do not rejoice because the spirits are subject to you,
but rejoice because your names are written in heaven.”