Gospel: (Mark 6: 7-13) Jesus summoned the Twelve and began to send them out two by two…He instructed them to take nothing for the journey but a walking stick—no food, no sack, no money in their belts. He said to them, “Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave. Whatever place does not welcome you, leave there and shake the dust from your feet in testimony against them.” So they went off and preached repentance. The Twelve drove out many demons, and they anointed with oil many who were sick and cured them.
Reflection: Jesus sends the apostles out on mission, two by two. His instructions indicate that they are to stay focused on what they are to do. Everything they would do originates in Jesus and the power to stay focused on the mission and be successful comes only from Jesus who sent them. When disciples are sent on mission, it is to take up the mission of Jesus, and there is only one mission, to establish God’s reign. Like Jesus, disciples will meet resistance but they will also meet success when they encounter those with faith. It is an awesome thought that Jesus entrusts his mission to us. With our own power and talent we can do little; with the authority with which Jesus invests his disciples, we can do much. (Living Liturgy, p.170)
Vincentian Meditation: The Manual of the Society states: From the beginning of the Society, the central and most basic activity of Conferences has been the visitation of the needy in the home. This action is the clearest symbol of the Vincentian charism which dictates the highest respect for the dignity of the poor…It symbolizes the fact that Vincentians are to reach out to the needy… and it is in the home environment that needy persons feel most free to entrust their stories of struggle to the helper. It is there, in the family setting, that Vincentians are asked to listen, offer humble advice, and render assistance. A related tradition is that Vincentians always visit in pairs—“two by two.” This requirement is based on the fact that the Conference is a community, not a collection of individuals who “do their own thing.” (US Manual, p.98)
In your home visits, how have you felt like the apostles going “two by two”—being sent to carry the mission of Jesus to the poor?