Melto D’Moronoyo: All are called to participate in the work of Christ

We continue our journey through Pentecost, learning what the church is and how the church should live.

Last week, we read that the Apostles, having been called by name, are chosen not from the upper echelons of society, but are poor and outcasts.

How are these poor and outcast men meant to go and drive out unclean spirits and preach the Word of God to the lost sheep (Mt 10:1-7)? We find our answer in this week’s readings.

The Old Testament reading, taken from Ezekiel 3:1-7, 10-12 reveals to us that it is the Word that strengthens us to go and “make disciples of the nations.”

In his vision, Ezekiel is told to consume the scroll given to him. This scroll is the Word of God, we are all called to consume it, for even though words might seem bitter and harsh, understanding them in the light of Christ allows us to taste their true sweetness, enthroning them in our hearts.

Only when understanding the sweet words of life and experiencing their truths through our hearts can we be uplifted and strengthened by the Spirit.

This idea is further explained through the First Letter to the Corinthians 12:12-13, 27-30. As members of the church, we are all baptised into one body; the Mystical Body of Christ.

Each member, depending on the working of the Spirit, is called to play a role. Each member is uplifted and strengthened in the body—not all are leaders, not all are teachers, not all are called to administer, prophecy or heal.

Yet all are called to participate as one, bringing the sweet message of the Word of the God to all nations.

Not all apostles were public speakers. Not all apostles were educated. Not all apostles could read or write. Not all the apostles were zealous or courageous.

Yet they were all filled with the Spirit and nourished by the Word of God, working together in the early church as one body, bringing the message of eternal life to all those they met.

“Do not worry about how you are to speak or what you are to say. You will be given at that moment what you are to say. For it will not be you who speaks but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.”

The Gospel reading from Matthew 10:16-25 explains to the faithful that having consumed the Word of the Lord and filled our hearts with his teachings, participating as one body to bring the message of the Lord to the nations, it is God himself who strengthens us and speaks through us.

All faithful, living a true witness to the Gospel message become the mouthpiece of the Lord, not speaking their own words, but speaking his words.

Not speaking in the language of man, but speaking the language of love that fills the hearts of all those who listen, allowing them to be uplifted by the Spirit.

Christ is to send all those who are called to follow him as “sheep in the midst of wolves.” This is a promise of suffering, of being ostracised, alienated and outcast.

Yet, being called by the master means we are no better than the master. If he who is love was hated, if he who is peace was punished, if he who is life was killed, should we not expect the same?

This is not a call to suffering and death, we must look beyond this and see Christ as the true lamb, sent in the midst of wolves, conquering them for all eternity.

He is the victorious lamb of the Book of Revelation (Rev 17:14), calling us, all members of his mystical body to follow his footsteps into the eternal victory of life over death.

Like the apostles, we might not be educated, might not be orators, might be illiterate, weak and fearful, yet, we have the Word of God.

The church has the Word that uplifts all faithful through the Holy Spirit, allowing every member to play a role in bringing the Good News to all nations.

It is not us mere humans that work, it is the Trinity. We are nourished by the Word (Son), we are enlivened and uplifted by the Spirit and it is the Father that speaks through us.

We are called to live like Christ, not only in his death to the world, but in his victory that brought eternal life and salvation to all.

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