Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

A Mission Only Ours to Do
Sr. Maryann Mueller, CSSF
FAN Board Member

Archbishop Oscar Romero

Our readings this Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time remind us that God has a mission for each one of us that is only ours to do. “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I dedicated you, a prophet to the nations I appointed you.” (Jer. 1:5) Our readings also assure us that God is with us on every step of the journey, especially during those times of doubt or when we find it challenging to follow in the footsteps of Jesus. “They will fight against you but not prevail over you, for I am with you to deliver you, says the LORD.” (Jer. 1:19) Jeremiah felt the presence of God when called to be a prophet to Israel. In the Gospel, Saint Luke tells of when Jesus felt that same presence when he was rejected by his neighbors in Nazareth and brought to the edge of the precipice. “But Jesus passed through the midst of them and went away.” (Lk. 4:30) Jesus knew His mission was to proclaim the Kingdom of God and went on his way doing what he had set out to do.

Reflecting on the life of Oscar Romero has always given me hope for both my individual journey and for our church. It was as an Archbishop that Romero was led to a conversion of heart and to the mission that was his to do. He knew the presence of God as he proclaimed the Gospel message for peace and justice in war-torn El Salvador, despite threats from the military leaders who eventually killed him.

We live in a country where over 47 million children, women and men live in poverty. As we end the month of January, which our Bishops have designated as Poverty Awareness Month, do you know the people who suffer from poverty in your community? How may you advocate with and for those people who are the poorest in your community?

At the end of her poem, The Summer Day, Mary Oliver asks “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” What has God called you to do with your one and only life? What is the mission that is only yours to do?

Sr. Maryann Mueller, CSSF
FAN Board Member

Suggested Petitions

For saints and prophets of our time, especially Archbishop Romero, may we continue to look to their stories for guidance and inspiration, Let us pray…

For all those who are currently escaping war and violence, especially in Latin America today, Let us pray…

Collect Prayer:

Grant us, Lord our God,
that we may honor you with all our mind,
and love everyone in truth of heart.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, Amen

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