READING— Matthew 4:12-23
Come after me and I will make you fishers of men.
Today’s Gospel includes the familiar story of Jesus calling his first disciples – all fishermen. There was Simon and his brother Andrew who were casting a net into the sea and there was James and his brother John who were in a boat mending their nets. The Gospel says that they left their nets and their boat and followed Jesus. This act of turning back and making a break with the past to embark on something new was in obedience to the example of Jesus, who himself, left his hometown of Nazareth to “live in Capernaum”.
These men who brought good news have one thing in common. All of them left what was familiar and embraced the new way Jesus was inviting them to look at life. If we are to bring Good News to those we minister to, we can do no less than to continually re-examine the way we are looking at our life and the lives of those we come into contact with. The Gospel has the power to renew us and make us breathe with new life. Today’s Gospel invites us to take courage to leave what stifles life in us and in others and to take on a new way of looking at life – a new way of looking at things. What old beliefs about myself, my work or others do I need to be liberated from? What new way of seeing does Jesus’ love invite me to take on today?
Praying with Peter, Ken Gire
Help me to be faithful in little things like cleaning nets, knowing that they could be your way of preparing me for greater things – like being a fisher of men.
Help me to obey simply and solely because you say so. Keep me from thinking that since I have fished a few waters that somehow I know better than you the course my life should take.
Call me, Lord, out from a shallow faith near the shore, which requires no risks and offers no rewards. Call me to a deeper commitment to you.
Take me to a place where I have worked hard by my own strength and yet ended up with empty nets. Let my heart acknowledge the depths of your dominion and the fullness of your power at work in the world.
Keep me ever aware that you are the Lord who labors beside me. At your bidding, O Master, I will let down my nets. And at your bidding, I will leave them forever behind. For what you offer is infinitely more than all the seas of this world could ever contain. AMEN.
Evangelii Gaudium, Pope Francis I #132 & 134
Proclaiming the Gospel message to different cultures involves proclaiming it to professional, scientific and academic circles. This means an encounter between faith, reason and the sciences with a view to developing new approaches and arguments… which would encourage greater openness to the Gospel on the part of all….
Universities are outstanding environments for articulating and developing this evangelizing commitment in an interdisciplinary and integrated way. Catholic schools, which always strive to join their work of education with the explicit proclamation of the Gospel, are a most valuable resource for the evangelization of culture, even in those countries and cities where hostile situations challenge us to greater creativity in our search for suitable methods.