Reflections

SAINT LUKE—THE EVANGELIST, MONDAY, OCTOBER 18, 2021

ONLY LUKE IS WITH ME
Introduction
A man converted from a heartless paganism is struck by Christ, the Lord, who is concerned about the poor and the downtrodden; a physician, he is fascinated too by a man who is more than a man, Christ the Lord who heals the sick body and soul. This is the Evangelist Luke. A jewel of his style is the tender description of the Holy Family in his Infancy Narrative. Among his main themes are God’s boundless forgiveness, prayer, the seriousness of the Christian life, the role of women in the Church, the universalism of a Church destined for all. These themes constantly reappear in the two books he wrote: his Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles.
 
Opening Prayer
Lord our God,
your evangelist Luke portrays with warmth
your Son Jesus Christ as the healer
of the ills of people,
and the friend and support of the poor.
May St. Luke open our eyes
to the needs of the poor and defenseless
and help us love them and care for them.
Make us poor of heart,
that we may understand the poor
and bring joy and liberation to them.
We ask this in the name of Jesus the Lord. Amen!
 
1 Reading: 2 TIMOTHY 4:10-17B
Beloved: Demas, enamoured of the present world, deserted me and went to Thessalonica, Crescens to Galatia, and Titus to Dalmatia. Luke is the only one with me. Get Mark and bring him with you, for he is helpful to me in the ministry. I have sent Tychicus to Ephesus. When you come, bring the cloak I left with Carpus in Troas, the papyrus rolls, and especially the parchments. Alexander the coppersmith did me a great deal of harm; the Lord will repay him according to his deeds. You too be on guard against him, for he has strongly resisted our preaching. At my first defense no one appeared on my behalf, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them! But the Lord stood by me and gave me strength, so that through me the proclamation might be completed and all the Gentiles might hear it.
 
Responsorial Psalm 145:10-11, 12-13, 17-18
R. (12) Your friends make known, O Lord, the glorious splendour of your Kingdom.
 
Let all your works give you thanks, O LORD,
and let your faithful ones bless you.
Let them discourse of the glory of your Kingdom
and speak of your might. R.
 
Making known to men your might
and the glorious splendour of your Kingdom.
Your Kingdom is a Kingdom for all ages,
and your dominion endures through all generations. R.
 
The LORD is just in all his ways
and holy in all his works.
The LORD is near to all who call upon him,
to all who call upon him in truth. R.
 
Alleluia: JOHN 15:16
Alleluia, alleluia.
I chose you from the world,
to go and bear fruit that will last, says the Lord.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
 
Gospel: LUKE 10:1-9
The Lord Jesus appointed seventy-two disciples whom he sent ahead of him in pairs to every town and place he intended to visit. He said to them, “The harvest is abundant but the labourers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out labourers for his harvest. Go on your way; behold, I am sending you like lambs among wolves. Carry no money bag, no sack, no sandals; and greet no one along the way. Into whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace to this household.’ If a peaceful person lives there, your peace will rest on him; but if not, it will return to you. Stay in the same house and eat and drink what is offered to you, for the labourer deserves payment. Do not move about from one house to another. Whatever town you enter and they welcome you, eat what is set before you, cure the sick in it and say to them, ‘The Kingdom of God is at hand for you.'”
 
Commentary
Traditionally, the task of “reaping the harvest” has been left for priests and religious. Yet it is a universal call to every baptised Christian. Each of us is called to preach the good news, using our God-given gifts and the context in which we live. Luke, whose holy memory we keep today, was one such ordinary Christian who preached the gospel using his many gifts. Tradition reckons that Luke was a Gentile physician from Antioch (“our beloved physician,” Paul calls him [Col 4:14]), who joined the company of Paul and travelled with him in his mission tours and remained with him during his trials (“Only Luke remains with me,” says Paul [2 Tim 4:11]). During his association with Paul and other apostles, he learned much about Jesus and the early Church. What he learned he wrote down, giving us the Gospel according to Luke and the Acts of the Apostles. If one’s writings reveal one’s character, then the themes—mercy, compassion, desire for universal salvation, concern for the poor, total renunciation for Christ’s sake, prayer, and disarming honesty and candour—found in the two writings of Luke reveal much about him.
 
Intercessions
– For the Church, that it keep bringing healing to those physically and spiritually ill, we pray:
– For women, that we may appreciate more their great contribution to the vitality of the Church, we pray:
– For our Christian communities, that they may be open to all and welcome all, the poor and the rich, strangers and familiars, we pray:
– For all of us, that we may take our faith seriously and pray that it may stay strong and rich, we pray:
 
Prayer over the Gifts
Our caring God,
here are bread and wine,
simple food and the drink of joy.
By this gesture of offering,
We assume our responsibility for the poor.
With your Son, let us never remain indifferent
to the human and spiritual misery
of our brothers and sisters in need.
Accept the poverty of our own hearts
and be our only lasting riches,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen!
 
Prayer after Communion
God, Father of the poor,
your Son Jesus has been here among us
and he has knocked at the door of our hearts.
We have welcomed him,
but it was he who gave us to eat.
May we keep receiving him
and making him feel comfortable as our brother
every time someone begs for our help
or, when in need, is too timid
to express where it hurts.
We ask for this sensitivity
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen!
 
Blessing
Luke was a healer, like Jesus. With him may we bring the healing power of our faith and love to the people around us, and may God bless you, the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen!
 
St. Luke — Pray for us!

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