WelCom October 2021
Mission Sunday, 31 October 2021
Fr Bernard Espiritu svd
Mission Sunday finds its roots in Jesus’ Great Missionary Mandate: Go and preach the Good News to all! (Matthew 28:19). All the baptised are commissioned to carry on this sacred mandate. Mission Sunday is the day we celebrate the privilege of participating in the Missio Dei (the Mission of God).
In his 2021 Mission Sunday Message, Pope Francis calls our attention to the reality that we each communicate not what we know intellectually but the experience of God in our lives. Pope Francis guides us with the Scriptures passage: ‘For we cannot keep from speaking what we have seen and heard’ (Acts 4:29). Just as the disciples’ joy became like fire in their bones that inflamed them with enthusiasm, so may we be able to share the sparks of God’s presence in our personal life. This joy, when shared, brings about fellowship in families and communities; and then this joy becomes complete (1 Jn1:3-4).
Mission Sunday is a day of celebration, prayer, and reflection when we remember the personal and communal God-experiences we have here and now. It is also the Sunday when believers in God’s goodness give financial support to the Catholic works done in more than a thousand young, poor, and growing mission dioceses spread in 157 countries where MISSIO work.
French-Catholic woman Pauline Jaricot started MISSIO in 1819 to promote prayers for the missions and collect a penny from generous people who form part of the Living Rosary groups.
Many individuals and faith communities in Aotearoa-New Zealand pray for vocations to the priesthood. The good news is that this year there are 13 seminarians in Holy Cross Seminary and internationally MISSIO – traditionally called Pontifical Mission Societies – supports 70,320 seminarians. Catholics in Aotearoa, through our Mission Collection, have assisted 454 of them.
For more information and to donate online, go to: https://missio.nz/mission-sunday-2021/
Fr Bernard Espiritu svd, director MISSIO New Zealand.