On the Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord, Pope Francis released a message for World Mission Day 2023, calling on Christians to bring the Gospel to a broken world.
“Hearts on Fire, Feet on the Move”
In the Catholic Church, October has long been associated with mission. The month starts with the feast of St Thérèse of Lisieux and draws to a close with World Mission Sunday – a special day of prayer and global solidarity celebrated in all Catholic parishes around the world. Pope Francis has taken may steps to encourage all members of Catholic communities to recognize themselves as missionary disciples; working and praying together to share God’s love with everyone, everywhere. The theme for this year’s World Mission Day is “Hearts on Fire, Feet on the Move,” inspired by the story of Jesus appearing to His disciples on the road to Emmaus.
Three key points:
Risen Lord’s Presence: The Pope highlights how the Risen Lord remains close to missionary disciples, especially when they are disoriented or discouraged. He emphasizes the importance of knowing Scripture for preaching Christ’s Gospel.
Communion through Eucharist: The Pope discusses the disciples recognizing Jesus when He breaks bread with them. He connects this to the importance of the Eucharist, stressing the need for daily prayer and Eucharistic adoration.
Joy of Sharing the Gospel: Pope Francis emphasizes the disciples’ joy in sharing the news of the Risen Christ and the duty of all Christians to announce the Gospel to a broken world. He calls for missionary cooperation and encourages Christians to contribute through prayers, actions, material offerings, and personal witness.
Make others’ hearts burn with God’s word
The Pope concludes by urging everyone to make others’ hearts burn with God’s word, open their eyes to Jesus in the Eucharist, and invite them to walk the path of peace and salvation bestowed upon humanity by God through Christ.
Here you can read and download Pope Francis’ Message
(Fully article @pg/Vatican News)