SPECIAL ISSUE: OUR LADY’S MISSIONARIES
Our life is mission
Editorial by Sr. Frances Brady, O.L.M.
According to the Oxford dictionary, “Mission” is, among other definitions, “a task to be performed” and “a person’s vocation or divinely appointed work in life.” It has a variety of meanings and may refer to a specific task or a way of life.
The motivation and goal of mission always involves others. One’s mission is never for oneself alone. We are part of a community of persons of this planet, created by God to be dependent on one another for our survival and fulfillment. It is likely then that we will be drawn into some aspect of mission and be happy only when we live according to the nature that God has given and sustains in us.
For Christians, mission is to follow the teaching and example of Jesus:
“…to bring the good news to the poor, to proclaim liberty to captives and to the blind new sight, to set the downtrodden free…” (Luke 4: 18-19). Reflection on the mission of Jesus in light of our world today gives us insight and guides the activities of our daily lives: Refugees who come to our country to escape violence and oppression are welcomed by individuals, parish communities, and nongovernmental organizations who offer help, guidance, and friendship. Amnesty International coordinates volunteer letter writers globally on behalf of persons unjustly imprisoned and/or mistreated. Through the Out of the Cold program, members of faith communities provide food and shelter for persons who are homeless. Organizations such as Development and Peace, KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives, and Citizens for Public Justice make us aware of how we can help in situations where persons, communities, and the environment are unjustly treated.
Wherever there is need, where someone or some group, or some part of the Earth is forgotten or neglected and needs to be recognized and respected, there is an invitation to mission. Around the world people respond generously and faithfully. One’s role may involve an important work that affects the whole world or something more modest that affects our neighbourhood. We are beginning to realize how much we are all connected, that by affecting our neighbourhood for good we are having a positive influence on the world. Together, we are drawn into the mission of building the kindom of God.∞