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Tuesday, 01 October 2019 07:00

Welcome to the Extraordinary Month of Mission

 2019.56.EMM

Do you love mission? Or would you love to love mission? This October is the perfect month to step out in a new way. After all, Pope Francis has declared it the EXTRAORDINARY MONTH OF MISSION. Here is a little intro to help you understand it further and to enable you to consider how you can be involved.

  1. What is the Extraordinary Month of Mission and why is it being held in October 2019?

One hundred years ago, the Pope of the time, Benedict XV promulgated an apostolic letter called Maximum Illud. He wrote this in the wake of the First World War which he described as a useless slaughter. His intention was to put forth the need for a fresh evangelical approach to missionary work in the world. This aim was reiterated by Vatican II, and Pope Francis notes that it is still timely. For this reason, the Extraordinary Month of Mission has been declared with the aim of fostering an increased awareness of the missio ad gentes and taking up again with renewed fervor the missionary transformation of the Church’s life and pastoral activity.

  1. What is the theme for the Extraordinary Month of Mission?

When Pope Francis addressed the National Directors of the Pontifical Mission Societies, he announced the theme of the Extraordinary Month of Mission to be “Baptized and Sent: The Church of Christ on Mission in the World.” His desire is to highlight that the call to mission is for all the baptized. He makes it very clear that such a call brings about conversion in both those who are sent and those who receive the message. In this way, mission is our own growth in holiness.

    3. What are the key dimensions for the Extraordinary Month of Mission?

Pope Francis identifies four key dimensions for the Extraordinary Month of Mission. His hope is that these will encourage, enable and strengthen efforts for all the baptized as they live out the call to take the Gospel to the ends of the earth. He encourages us to…

  1. Strengthen your own personal encounter with Jesus Christ who is alive in the Chirch through the Eucharist, the Word of God, and personal and communal prayer
  2. Look tot eh witness of the saints, the Missionary Martyrs, and the Confessors of the Faith, who are unique expressions of the Churches throughout the world. They can inspire and encourage us in our own situations.
  3. Allow biblical, catechetical, spiritual, and theological formation regarding the missio ad gentes to shape us in both personal ways, and in our evangelising activity.
  4. Take a step forth in love as a material support for the immense work of evangelization.

4. How can I participate in the Extraordinary Month of Mission?

  • Spend time each day reflecting on the scriptures. In this document, you will find reflections for the readings of the day for very day in October. Allow them to draw you closer to Jesus and to challenge and encourage you in your own mission, whatever that might be. Go to http://www.october2019.va/en.html and download the guide. The reflections start on page 87.
  • Try to attend an extra Mass each week to connect more deeply with Jesus in the Eucharist. 
  • Choose a saint and read about them. Allow their passion for mission to excite you and reignite your own missionary zeal. Again, there are some starting points in the guide found at http://www.october2019.va/en.html starting from page 213.
  • Prayer the Extraordinary Month of Mission prayer every day during the month and invite others to do the same.
    • Heavenly Father, when your only begotten Son Jesus Christ rose from the dead, he commissioned his followers to “go and make disciples of all nations” and you remind us that through our Baptism we are made sharers in the mission of the Church. Empower us by the gifts of the Holy Spirit to be courageous and zealous in bearing witness to the Gospel, so that the mission entrusted to the Church, which is still very far from completion, may find new and efficacious expressions that bring life and light to the world. Help us make it possible for all peoples to experience the saving love and mercy of Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, One God, forever and ever.  Amen.
  • Take a step and become involved in some new missionary activity.
  • Decide to do one act of kindness each day for another person – these can speak the love of God in poignant ways.
  • Check out the MGL Sisters Facebook Page and Website. We will be posting something every few days – blogs, inspiring quotes, snapshots of our mission and more!