Homily (Reflection) for the Feast of Saint Luke the Evangelist (18th October, 2019) on the Gospel and the Feast
Ps 144:10-13.17-18. (R. v.12);
It is believed that Luke was born a Greek and a Gentile. According to Eusebius, he was born at Antioch in Syria. Saint Paul identified him as a physician, cf. Col 4:14. He joined Paul's company at Troas and travelled with him. Luke was faithful to him even when all deserted him, cf. 2Tim 4:11. He wrote the Gospel according to Luke and Acts of the Apostles based on the teachings of Saint Paul, cf. Lk 1:1-3. His gospel shows special sensitivity to evangelizing the Gentiles. It is the gospel of the poor and of social justice. Mary’s Magnificat (cf. Lk 1:46-55), the Annunciation (cf. Lk 1:26-38), the Presentation (cf. Lk 2:22-38), Jesus' disappearance (Lk 2:41-51), among other topics are contained only in his gospel. Forgiveness and God's mercy to sinners are also of first importance to Luke. He has respect for women. Some early writers believed that he was martyred, whereas others hold he lived a long life. He is the patron saint of physicians and surgeons.
Topic: The harvest is plentiful (Lk 10:2).
In today’s gospel, Jesus appointed seventy others and sent them out in pairs with this instruction in part, “The harvest is plentiful, but the labourers are few; therefore ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers into his harvest.... See, I am sending you out like lambs into the midst of wolves.”
Jesus’ instruction shows us among other things that the work is enormous and requires more labourers. However, considering the fact that many move about today with different titles all in the name of God, one wonders whether these words of Jesus still hold today. Without going deep into this, these words are still as valid today as they were when Jesus first said them.
Again, the disciples never objected to His instruction to pray for labourers. They knew and accepted the fact that they would not be able to carry out the task alone.
In our world today, it seems that the work is under tussle. Everyone is claiming today that it is their birthright. Saint Luke we celebrate today was neither one of the twelve nor among the seventy that Jesus sent in today’s gospel. Yet he made contributions that no other person made as we have seen some of them in his history. There is need for us to pray fervently for more labourers and also open our hands to welcome others. The work is too vast that no one will ever disturb the other in the field.
Bible Reading: Num 11:16-30.
Thought for today: The work is big enough.
Let us pray: Lord, give us the grace to open our hearts to accept our brothers and sisters – Amen.
Saint Luke the Evangelist – Pray for us.
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