The Gospel reading from the Mass for Thursday of the 14th Week of Ordinary Time is Matthew 10:7-15.

Continuing His Missionary Sermon after calling the 12 Apostles to evangelize the 12 Tribes of Israel and giving them the authority and power to do so (Matt 10:1-7), Christ now offers specific instructions about how the Apostles are to carry out that mission. Their mission is to announce that the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand and to “cure the sick, raise the dead, please the lepers and drive out demons.”

Christ gives the Apostles the mindset an evangelist must have. They are to offer Christ’s gifts of healing without cost. They are to be completely reliant on Christ to provide for them in their mission work, taking no money or provisions. Each evangelist is to be completely reliant on Christ to provide for their sustenance.

Christ then gives the Apostles precise tactical instructions upon entering a village. They are to identify, build a relationship and stay with a worthy man. They are to bless those who are willing to hear the Gospel and to publicly rebuke (to shake off the dust) those who are unwilling to receive the Gospel. Ominously,  Christ using the destruction of Sodom for rampant homosexual sin (Gen 19:1-29) as an warning of the punishment that will come to those who reject the Gospel.

Awed by Jesus ChristAlmighty King and Lord, Christ grants authority and the mission to His 12 Apostles to announce His Kingdom and to perform impossible acts; He gives precise and directive instructions as to the mindset and tactics the Apostles are to use. Person of the Trinity, Christ has personal knowledge of the destruction of Sodom. Divine Judge, Christ warns of the horrific destruction of those who reject the Gospel and reaffirms the destruction of Sodom.

Being a Heroic Catholic Man

1) The Divine King, Jesus is the greatest leader of men ever.  Marvel at how Christ not only commands His Apostles to act, but provides precise instructions about how to evangelize, guidance that continue to bear fruit today in His worldwide Catholic Church.

2) Christ’s first directive to the Apostles is to preach, “The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand”; The Kingdom had arrived with Christ and remains a reality, often unrecognized, in the world today. Reflect on the Kingdom of God/Heaven (CCC 541-550, 763-764, 2816-2821) and pray for Christ to make you a heroic Catholic man of His Kingdom.

3) As a Person of the Trinity, Christ chose to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah because of widespread homosexual perversion (a sin that “cries out to Heaven”; CCC 1867) and recalls the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah in today’s Gospel as a warning to all men. Reflect on the Church’s unchanging teaching on Chastity and Homosexuality (CCC 2357-2359) and pray for Christ to help those who engage in all types of sexual sin (The 6th Commandment) to repent and be redeemed.

Spiritual Practices – Include in Today’s Prayers

Sacred Mystery of Rosary – The Luminous Mysteries

Daily Devotion – The Holy Eucharist

Virtue of the Day – Fortitude

Corporal Work of Mercy – To shelter the homeless

Spiritual Work of Mercy – To bear wrongs patiently