Wednesday of the Fourteenth Week in Ordinary Time

If you want to make a Jesuit laugh, ask him “So, do you pick where you get to work, or does someone decide it for you?” The answer is characteristically Jesuit: “It’s complicated.”

All Christians must discern how best to use God’s gifts and talents to be a sign of the Kingdom of God in the world. Each Jesuit is asked to offer his prayerful input about what type of work God may be calling him to do. But a hallmark of Jesuit life is obedience to the will of God and the needs of the Church. Thus a Jesuit entrusts his gifts and desires to a provincial superior, who stands in the place of Christ for the men in his charge. “You discern,” a provincial might drolly say, “but I decide.”

As mentioned, it’s complicated.

But at its best, this way of missioning men is modeled on Christ’s summoning and sending out of his Twelve disciples, which we read about in today’s Gospel:

Jesus summoned his Twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits to drive them out and to cure every disease and every illness.

As long as there is disease, illness, and the presence of unclean spirits, Jesus’ healing work will continue. As long as people remain estranged from God, others, and themselves, Jesus’ work to restore humanity to God will continue. And as we have heard in the Gospels on both Sunday and yesterday of this week, “The harvest is abundant, but the laborers are few.”

For prayer today, let us ask the Master of the Harvest to send out many more laborers to serve His Church as Jesuits, with passion and zeal.

St. Ignatius Loyola…Pray for us!

July 10th, 2013