In October, we celebrate World Mission Month, a month dedicated to the life-giving work of missionaries around the world.
Pope Francis’ message for World Mission Day 2022 reflects on the theme: “You shall be my witnesses” (Acts 1:8). He reminds us that, “as Christians, we cannot keep the Lord to ourselves,” “We cannot but speak about what we have seen and heard” as we “recall with gratitude all those men and women who by their testimony of life help us to renew our baptismal commitment to be generous and joyful apostles of the Gospel.”
We are called to be witnesses! Witnesses of the Risen Christ and his message! He himself calls for witnesses and he tells us how this will be done: “you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you”. Being his witnesses does not mean that we have to do this on our own, but together, with our brothers and sisters! Thus, it is by grace that we receive, the power to BECOME witnesses. He also tells us that this would set us out: “to the ends of the Earth!”
“You will be my witnesses” (Acts 1:8)
This is the central point, the heart of Jesus’ teaching to the disciples, in view of their being sent forth into the world. The disciples are to be witnesses of Jesus, thanks to the grace of the Holy Spirit that they received. Wherever they go and in whatever place they find themselves. Christ was the first to be sent, as a “missionary” of the Father (cf. Jn 20:21), and as such, He is the Father’s “faithful witness” (cf. Rev 1:5). In a similar way, every Christian is called to be a missionary and witness to Christ.
Message of His Holiness Pope Francis for World Mission Day 2022