October 3, 2012
When I reflect upon the task of proclaiming the Good News today, I’m reminded of the beginning of G.K. Chersterton’s Orthodoxy. In Orthodoxy, Chesterton talks about a story he always wanted to write about an English yachtsman who sets out for the south sea, but slightly miscalculates his course and ends up rediscovering England. He talks about how foolish the young man must have felt, but Chesterton goes on to write that the yachtsman’s predicament is enviable: “What could be more delightful than to have in the same few minutes all the fascinating terrors of going abroad combined with all the human security of coming home?” Chesterton’s fable illustrates the enviable position that we find ourselves in when we proclaim God’s Word in our day. What is our task - if not to set out on an exciting and perilous journey only to return to the comfort and solace of home? Our evangelizing mission is comprised of many things, but chief among them is the necessity to approach evangelization with a new frame-of-mind in every age. It demands a courageous manner of acting, the ability to read and interpret new signs, so that we may ultimately proclaim that ‘Christ is risen’ in way that makes sense to those around us.
It may seem counter-intuitive, but the key to any good missionary activity “out there” begins “in here” with a renewed commitment to prayer and participation in the life of our Christian communities. In other words, every missionary effort begins with a deep and abiding relationship with God; manifested through attentiveness to his will, which we then realize in our lives. Mission today means we’re called to set out like that English yachtsman with eagerness to rediscover the wonders and treasures of our Christian faith. To feel the thrill of taking risks, to stand in awe of the grandeur and richness of God’s love and in setting out, to begin our long journey home to the warmth and peace of God’s embrace.
Cheridan grew up in Namibia for most of her life before immigrating to Canada during her teenage years. Her formative years in Namibia fostered in her a passion for social justice but also a deep sense of God's majesty and beauty as witnessed in nature. She pursued an interdisciplinary degree specializing in the Christianity and Culture program at St Michael's College, University of Toronto. She works at Salt and Light Catholic Media Foundation as an Associate Producer, where she is co-hosting and writing a 15 part series about the New Evangelization and the Second Vatican Council called The Church Alive. And when she’s not travelling around the world finding stories of hope and joy she enjoys participating in Mass as a reader and distributing sandwiches on Sundays to the hungry at her home parish.
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