St. Cyril of Jerusalem Parish,15520 Ventura Boulevard, Encino, California - St. Cyril of Jerusalem Church, 15520 Ventura Boulevard,  Encino, California 91436
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From the Desk of Father Mac
 

FIFTEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
July 15, 2018


My Dear Friends in Christ,

In today’s Gospel, Jesus sends his apostles out two by two to share in his mission of spreading the Good News of salvation. By virtue of our baptism, we share in this mission and are called to be apostles. The word "apostle" comes from the Greek word meaning: "to be sent." Every Christian is sent out to bear witness to Christ, to bring his wisdom and his healing touch to those who are in need materially, spiritually, and physically. Under the supervision of our bishops (the successors to these first Twelve Apostles), we are all called to spread the Kingdom, to be agents of evangelization. Therefore, the missionary instructions that Christ gave to his first followers also applies to us! 

These instructions can be summed up in two words: trust and perseverance. Besides the clothes on their backs, the Apostles are only supposed to bring a walking stick and their sandals. Every need they have along the way will be met, but it will be met not by their own self-sufficiency but by God's providence: they are to trust in God to sustain their efforts. The walking stick and the sandals symbolize a determination to continue moving forward, to persevere in their efforts to fulfill God's will. They must not give up. Even when they face opposition, persecution, and a cold welcome (which they will - Christ leaves no room for doubt about that), they are not to be deterred; they are to persevere. Trust and perseverance - two key qualities of the Christian missionary (and we are all Christian missionaries, in one way or another) whose relevance will never run out.

Following Christ and sharing in his mission can be uncomfortable - there's no escape from that. God loves us too much to let us stay in our comfort zones. He always leads us further along the path of spiritual maturity, further up the mountain of Christian wisdom, courage and holiness. Today he is inviting us to renew our commitment to Him. And in this Mass he will remind us that he is worthy of such a commitment; he won’t let us down! He is the good shepherd who gives up his own life for us in the Eucharist.

But what about all those whom Jesus is trying to speak to who are not here today? What about our friends, family members, and colleagues who are afraid to swim against the current of popular culture and opinion? How does God make his voice heard to them? Through us. We are his messengers, his ambassadors - just like the prophet Amos in the first reading, and just like the first apostles sent out two by two.

This week, we can follow their example by sharing with those around us the Good News that God has shared with us. We don't have to make a big deal out of it; we just have to sincerely care about the people around us. If we truly care about others, we will point out where they can find true, life-giving nourishment: in God, who loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, so that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

In Christ,
 

Pastor 

For Information, please contact the Parish Office at  info@st-cyril.org or phone 818.986.8234


 

St Cyril of Jerusalem Parish
15520 Ventura Boulevard
(mail: 4601 Firmament Ave)
Encino, CA  91436
818- 986.8234

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Image of artwork in header - Used with permission (one-time use only)  from: Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe, La Crosse, WI.
Title: "St Cyril of Jerusalem" - Artist: Anthony Visco, Atelier for the Sacred Arts, Philadelphia, PA - Shrine’s website: guadalupeshrine.org



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