Notable quotations from Pope Francis and official teachings of the Roman Catholic Church
... The Church is missionary by her very nature: she was born "to go forth."
World Mission Day is a privileged moment when the faithful of various continents engage in prayer and concrete gestures of solidarity in support of the young Churches in mission lands.
It is a celebration of grace and joy. A celebration of grace, because the Holy Spirit, sent by the Father, offers wisdom and strength to whose who are obedient to His action. A celebration of joy, because Jesus Christ, the Father's Son, sent to evangelize the world, supports and accompanies our missionary efforts.
"The joy of the Gospel fills the hearts and lives of all who encounter Jesus. Those who accept His offer of salvation are set free from sin, sorrow, inner emptiness and loneliness. With Christ joy is constantly born anew" (Evangelii Gaudium, 1).
Humanity greatly needs to lay hold of the salvation brought by Christ. His disciples are those who allow themselves to be seized ever more by the love of Jesus and marked by the fire of passion for the Kingdom of God and the proclamation of the joy of the Gospel.
The Bishops ... are called to acknowledge that the joy of communicating Jesus Christ is expressed in a concern to proclaim Him in the most distant places, as well as in a constant outreach to the peripheries of their own territory, where great numbers of the poor are waiting for this message.
The joy of the Gospel is born of the encounter with Christ and from sharing with the poor... Whenever there is joy, enthusiasm and a desire to bring Christ to others , genuine vocations arise... We should not overlook lay vocations to mission... They are called to take an increasingly important role in the spread of the Gospel.
World Mission Day is ... an occasion to rekindle the desire and the moral obligation to take joyful part in the mission ad gentes. A monetary contribution ... is the sign of a self-offering, first to the Lord and then to others, in this way a material offering can become a means for the evangelization of humanity built on love.
Let us pray through the intercession of Mary, the model of humble and joyful evangelization, that the Church may become a welcoming home, a mother for all peoples and the source of rebirth for our world.
(Source: Message for World Mission Day, issued June 8, 2014)
Published by: Presentation Ministries, 3230 McHenry Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45211, (513) 662-5378, www.presentationministries.com