Believe and Receive the Mission
Acts 4:13-21; Psalms 118; Mark 16:9-15
The Gospel text of today highlights the Risen Lord’s encounter with the eleven Disciples. The Text underscores intensely the hardness of heart and unbelief that dominate the disciples, “He scolded them, because they did not have faith and because they were too stubborn to believe those who had seen him alive.” Mark 16:14.
Believing can be exhausting for everyone; it is supposed to be like climbing up a rough and dangerous mountain. The resurrection of Jesus was an overwhelming event that required gradual revelation to the disciples of Jesus. This is the reason why God used the following gradual steps to reveal to His disciples that Jesus was truly risen:
The Empty Tomb of Jesus
Linen cloths in which his body had been wrapped
The vision of angels who announced the fact that he had risen
Appearance to Mary Magdalene and other holy women
Appearance to two displaces; Cleophas and a companion
Appearance to the College of the Apostles
Thomas’ touch of the wounds of Jesus on his hands and on his side
The above steps of revelation of the Risen Christ transformed the sad and despairing men and women into people radiant with joy and courage; from unbelievers to believers. He now hands over the great commission to them, “Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to the whole creation.” Mark 16:15.
Because of their believe in the risen Christ, they took up the mandate, and left the locked room and preached the risen Christ, unafraid of what would happen to them. They quit hiding, because they knew the truth. They finally understood that Jesus is God incarnate, who saves people from sin.
May we also believe in the risen Christ, and may this faith transform us into a people who are ready to receive the mission of preaching the Gospel to the whole creation with joy and courage. It is for the salvation of all humanity and so it is to be carried to the ends of the world.
The Church has never ceased to announce the Good News, but it has not yet reached the ears of everyone as Jesus desired. Every Christian has to take the responsibility to pass on the faith he or she received. This mission is not for Priests and Religious only, but it’s for all the baptised.
Like Apostles Peter and John in the first reading, may we be determined to tell the world about the teachings of Jesus. May we speak and witness to the truth. May we endeavour to proclaim the Gospel through our way of life. May our works of charity also constitute the strongest witness to our Christian Faith.