Intention: That with this new year will come a new spirit in all people as we discern how best to work together to heal our broken world by building the Kingdom of God.
Today’s Gospel | John 1:35-42
John was standing with two of his disciples, and as he watched Jesus walk by, he said, “Behold, the Lamb of God.” The two disciples heard what he said and followed Jesus. Jesus turned and saw them following him and said to them, “What are you looking for?” They said to him, “Rabbi” (which translated means Teacher), “where are you staying?” He said to them, “Come, and you will see.” So they went and saw where he was staying, and they stayed with him that day. It was about four in the afternoon. Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, was one of the two who heard John and followed Jesus. He first found his own brother Simon and told him, “We have found the Messiah,” which is translated Christ. Then he brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon the son of John; you will be called Cephas,” which is translated Peter.
From the Ninth Meditation for the Time of Retreat | Saint John Baptist de La Salle
You must not doubt that it is a great gift of God, this grace he has given you to be entrusted with the instruction of children, to announce the Gospel to them and to bring them up in the spirit of religion. But in calling you to this holy ministry, God demands that you fulfill it with ardent zeal for their salvation, because this is the work of God, and he curses the one who does his work carelessly.
Let it be clear, then, in all your conduct toward the children who are entrusted to you, that you regard yourselves as the ministers of God, carrying out your ministry with love and a sincere and true zeal, accepting with much patience the difficulties you have to suffer, willing to be despised by men and to be persecuted, even to give your life for Jesus in the fulfillment of your ministry.
Eternal Father, like the first disciples, we can hear the call of your Son to follow him in his work of proclaiming your Good News to all people, especially those who are poor, oppressed, forgotten. Inspire in us a determination to cross boundaries and reach those who have been pushed to the margins of our world. May we stand with them as we look to create a more compassionate and just world. Make of us humble and caring builders of your Kingdom. We ask this of you who lives and reigns with your Son and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. Amen.