We are apostles of Christ in the midst of the world

 I will come to gather the nations of every language... and I will send messengers to the nations: to Tarshish, Ethiopia, Libya, Massach, Tubal and Greece; to the distant shores..... And they shall come from East and West and North and South and sit down at the Table in the Kingdom of God9. This prophecy has already been fulfilled, and, at the same time, there are many who do not yet know Christ; perhaps in our own family, among our friends, people we meet daily. It is possible that many have heard of Him, but in reality do not know Him. We too could repeat to many the words of the Baptist: Among you there is one whom you do not know.

The Lord wanted us to participate in his mission to save the world - everyone - and he has made apostolic zeal an essential and inseparable element of the Christian vocation. Whoever decides to follow him, and we follow him, becomes an apostle with concrete responsibilities to help others to reach the narrow door that leads to Heaven: "inserted by Baptism into the Body of Christ, strengthened by Confirmation in the power of the Holy Spirit, it is the Lord himself who destines them for the apostolate. All Christians, of every age and condition, in every circumstance in which they find themselves, are called "to bear witness to Christ throughout the world".

Apostolic zeal, the desire to bring many closer to the Lord, does not lead to doing strange or showy things, much less to neglecting family, social and professional duties. It is precisely in these tasks, in the family, in the workplace, with friends, taking advantage of normal human relationships, that we find the field for an apostolic action that is often quiet but always effective.

In the midst of the world, where God has placed us, we must lead others to Christ: by example, showing coherence between faith and works; with constant joy; with serenity in the face of difficulties, present in every life; through the word, which always encourages, and shows the greatness and wonder of meeting and following Jesus; helping some to approach the sacrament of forgiveness, strengthening others who were perhaps on the verge of abandoning the Master.

Let us ask ourselves today in our prayer if the people who treat and know us distinguish in us a disciple of Christ. Let us think of how many people we have helped to take a firm step on their way to Heaven: how many we have spoken to about God, or invited to a spiritual retreat, or advised a good book that helps their soul, to whom we have facilitated Confession..., or taught the doctrine of the Magisterium on the family or marriage; to whom we have discovered the greatness of being generous in almsgiving, in the number of children, in following Christ with unconditional dedication.... Of the first Christians it was said: "what the soul is to the body, that is what Christians are to the world". Can the same be said of us in the family, in our place of study or work, in the cultural or sports association to which we belong, are we the soul that gives the life of Christ wherever we are present?