Our Missionary Commitment

This is a busy weekend for us at St Thomas of Canterbury. Father Federico Gandolfi OFM is here and on Friday after celebrating evening Mass spoke about his work in South Sudan. At all Masses this weekend Fr Patrick is speaking about the work of the missionary order of Spiritians and he will be asking for our support through prayer and donation.

Our own Fr Sylvester is a member of this congregation which was formerly known as The Holy Ghost Fathers. It’s 100 years since Pope Benedict XV’s encyclical “Maximum Illud” called on Catholics to bring the Good News to all peoples (Missio Ad Gentes). So to commemorate this anniversary, Pope Francis has declared October 2019 to be an Extraordinary Month of Mission (EMM).

This special month of prayer and action calls us all to renew our missionary commitment. Because we’re all called to share the Good News of Jesus Christ with all peoples. It is too easy for us to leave all missionary activity to people like Fr Frederick and Fr Patrick. Pope Francis reminds us to pray that “the Holy Spirit may engender a new missionary spring for all those baptised and sent by Christ’s Church.”

So what should you and I do to be part of this new missionary spring. What am I doing to share the Good News of Jesus Christ with others?

Here is the prayer written for this month.

Heavenly Father,

when your only begotten Son Jesus Christ rose from the dead,

he commissioned his followers

to “go and make disciples of all nations”

and you remind us that through our Baptism we are made sharers in the mission of the Church.

Empower us by the gifts of the Holy Spirit to be courageous and zealous

in bearing witness to the Gospel,

so that the mission entrusted to the Church, which is still very far from completion, may find new and. efficacious expressions that bring life and light to the world.

Help us make it possible for all peoples to experience the saving love

and mercy of Jesus Christ,

who lives and reigns with you

in the unity of the Holy Spirit, One God, forever and ever.

Canon Father Anthony Charlton
Canon Father Anthony CharltonParish Priest