FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL
ON EVANGELIZATION AND MISSION
EVANGELIZATION AND FAMILY AND WORK WITH THE POOR
April 18, 2016
Today’s reading: Acts 11:1-18
Our mission in CFC-FFL consists of 3 basic parts: (1) evangelization, (2) family renewal and (3) work with the poor. All are important. But it must be known that the foundation for family renewal and work with the poor is evangelization, by which people’s hearts are touched and they experience conversion. You can have all the teachings on marriage and family but unless hearts are converted to Christ, they will not do very much good. You can have many corporal works of mercy but it would not really matter much in the end if those who are poor do not end up in heaven.
Today we meet the godly Cornelius, who was “devout and God-fearing along with his whole household, who used to give alms generously to the Jewish people and pray to God constantly” (Acts 10:2). Wow. He was doing all the right things. He was prayerful, had a godly family life, and generously helped the poor. But he wanted to be even closer to God by meeting and knowing Christ, through Peter whom he summoned. An angel told him that Peter would “speak words to you by which you and all your household will be saved.” (v.14).
One can be a good person, have a good marriage and family life, and help the poor, but that is not enough. There are many of them around, and not just Christians. But more is needed. More basic and essential is to truly meet Christ, to live Christ, and to share Christ. What is needed is “life-giving repentance” (v.18b) and empowerment through being “baptized with the holy Spirit” (v.16b). What is needed is to grow in holiness and strive for Christian perfection. This can only be achieved through the work of evangelization, which brings true transformation in Christ.
Only then can one truly have a great marriage and family, and be truly concerned for the poor.
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