Date: Sunday, July 11, 2021
Jesus summons the Twelve. “Summons” sounds like being called to the principal’s office or receiving a speeding ticket! Last week in Sunday Scripture, Jesus is rejected in his hometown. Today, we hear that Jesus is not deterred. He continues to teach and to heal and sends the Twelve on mission to announce the Kingdom of God.
Jesus sends them two by two. It is not so much a strategy to cover more towns as it is a way for the apostles to partner, to share, to learn and to grow together.
Jesus equips his disciples “with authority over unclean spirits.” Jesus directs them to preach repentance, to drive out demons, to anoint with oil and to cure the sick. The Kingdom of God is at hand!
Jesus instructs them. “Take nothing for the journey but a walking stick” and to wear sandals. They are to travel light trusting in God’s providence and the hospitality of those who receive them.
Jesus forewarns them of possible failure. There will be places, houses, and hearts, that will not welcome them.
The Jesus sends them on their way – his way!
We must understand that this summary paragraph in the Gospel according to St. Mark is directed to all those who are listening to or reading this Gospel. Us! We are summoned, we are sent, we are equipped, we are given a purpose, we are instructed, and we are forewarned of rejection and suffering.
Next Sunday we will learn what happens when apostles return to Jesus and “report all they have done and taught.” At then end of the day, when we find a quiet moment with Jesus in prayer, do we have anything to report?