Then Jesus called the twelve together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal. He said to them, “Take nothing for your journey, no staff, nor bag, nor bread, nor money—not even an extra tunic. Whatever house you enter, stay there, and leave from there.Wherever they do not welcome you, as you are leaving that town shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.” They departed and went through the villages, bringing the good news and curing diseases everywhere.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved. http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations
This sounds like fun! How to win friends and influence people. Be the most popular kid on your block. Just find someone to commission you to cure disease and heal the sick. Then go from village to village and cure diseases everywhere. It sounds like the apostles hit the jackpot in today’s gospel. Do we believe Jesus commissions us to do the same today? I suspect not. But, how many times have your spirits been picked out of the gutters of despair by a kind word or gesture from another person. We can and are called to do the same for all the hurting people in our lives.
This reading also makes me think about the current ebola crisis in Africa. Curing and healing are urgently needed. Those who answer this call do so at great risk to themselves as we have all too often read or heard in news accounts of the crisis. Let’s pray in a very special way today for all those sick with the ebola virus and those healthcare workers attending to them.
—David McNulty works for the Midwest Jesuits. Dave and his wife Judy are grandparents of six.
Lord, we pray for Liberia and the people of West Africa struck by the ebola virus. Strengthen those in positions of leadership and influence to do everything possible to bring the Ebola outbreak to an end. Protect the amazing health care workers and bring healing and comfort to the suffering. Aid those mourning for family and friends fighting this disease and bring solace to those grieving the loss of a loved one.