The Catholic Church is commemorating World Mission Sunday on 22 October 2023. Pope Francis has chosen “Hearts on Fire, Feet on the Move” as the theme for World Mission Sunday (WMS) 2023. He reflects on the story of the disciples who met Jesus on their way to Emmaus (cf. Luke 24:13-35). World Mission Sunday is an annual celebration that gives us an opportunity to reflect on the significance of mission work in the life of the Church. Despite our differences, we must all be dedicated and committed to continuing Christ’s mission on earth.
The Pope has once again urged us to draw inspiration from our encounter with the Risen Lord and to allow His Spirit to guide us on our journey with passion in our hearts, our eyes open, and our feet moving forward. Our mission is to spread the fire of God’s word in the hearts of others, to discover and rediscover the presence of Jesus in the Eucharist, and to invite everyone to join us on the path of peace and salvation that God has gifted to all of humanity through Christ.
As a way of showing our support, we can offer prayers and stand in solidarity with the missionaries who work tirelessly to spread the Good News. Additionally, we can respond to Christ’s call to feed the hungry and clothe the naked by making a donation. All the contributions collected during the Masses worldwide are used to support churches in their evangelisation efforts across the globe, specifically towards hospitals, schools, and vocations in nations where the Church is new, young, or poor. Let’s celebrate World Mission Sunday 2023 by coming together for the Eucharistic celebration and supporting missionaries with enthusiasm.
The Feast of Saint Theresa of Lisieux is celebrated on 1st October. After joining the Carmelites, she desired to become a missionary and was willing to travel to Vietnam to establish a new monastery there. However, she didn’t get the opportunity to do so during her lifetime. Nevertheless, she took on her task of offering her life in a missionary spirit with joy. Through her small actions and gestures of praying for the missionaries and the Church, she became a universal Patroness of missions without leaving her convent. The missionary spirit is alive in the hearts of every one of us - whether we are young or old, married or single.
On this World Mission Sunday, let us come together, set our hearts on fire, and move forward with Christ’s love through missionaries in the footsteps of Saint Theresa of Lisieux and become disciples of missionaries, inspiring every individual that we meet every day in our lives. Through the work of missionaries, we can spread Christ’s love and bring hope to those in need.
It is important that we keep the presence of Jesus and His work alive in our nation. We can achieve this by stirring our hearts with small acts of love and prayers and moving forward with that love by befriending people of other faiths and promoting healthcare, education, and spiritual well-being in the hearts of everyone, everywhere. By doing so, we can help fulfil the will of God and bring everyone closer to His Kingdom.