"May the darkness of sin and the night of unbelief vanish before the light of the Word and the Spirit of grace. May the Heart of Jesus live in the hearts of all people" (Saint Arnold Janssen).
Today, on Mission Sunday, we remind ourselves that the Church is missionary by nature. Without missionaries (in our Polish case, without Saint Adalbert) Christian faith would not have reached our hearts.
Now we are following Christ - "not to be served, but to serve and give our lives" (see 2 Cor 4). Missionaries of Divine Word work on all continents, almost in 100 countries around the world for over 100 years. Polish missionaries also from the beginning of the 20th century. The first large group went to Indonesia in 1965, when the communist government gave permission. Our missionaries from the mission seminary in Pieniężno choose three countries and the superiors decide where they are to do their ministry.
It was similar in my case when I chose three Asian countries before perpetual vows. But the religious superiors decided that first I would complete my PhD studies, and after that I received permission for missionary work in Ledalero, on Flores island, Indonesia.
At present, in our mission seminary in Pieniężno there are only 8-eight Polish seminarians and 5 foreigners from Indonesia, Ghana and Papua New Guinea. However, in other countries, both in Africa and Asia, the number of vocations is increasing. Only in Indonesia, this year we have more than 100 candidates.
Reading these statistics - we, in Europe and in Poland, could be troubled for the future of the Church. Fortunately, the missionaries from Asia and Africa are coming here to help us. Indonesians, Togians, Vietnamese and Indians have been working in Poland for many years.
What is our missionary task in the 21st century? The answer is given to us by the Word of God: "Let us hold firmly to the faith" (Heb. 4:14) and "Let us approach with confidence to the Heart of Jesus, full of grace and mercy." Yes, we aslo should be missionaries of the modern world in our families, work, school, neighborhood, etc.
However, one can not be a missionary unless he or she is united with Jesus Christ through the sacraments, and especially through the Eucharist. Let's pray and ask: "Show your grace to those who trust in You, Lord" (Ps 33). Amen.
Prayers of SVD
May the darkness of sin
and the night of unbelief vanish before the light of the Word
and the Spirit of grace
and may the Heart of Jesus live
in the hearts of all people.
(Saint Arnold Janssen)