In today’s Gospel, Jesus instructs the 72 disciples whom he sent out in pairs to announce peace. “Into whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace to this household.’ If a peaceful person lives there, your peace will rest on him…”
You have no doubt noticed that I often begin my homilies with a greeting of peace. Today’s Gospel is why I do that. St. Francis picked up on this instruction and encouraged his friars to announce peace as they went about proclaiming the Good News of the Kingdom of God.
All this reminded me of the beautiful prayer attributed to St. Francis:
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love. Where there is injury, pardon. Where there is doubt, faith. Where there is despair, hope. Where there is darkness light. And where there is sadness, joy. O Divine Master, Grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console. To be understood, as to understand. To be loved, as to love. For it is in giving that we receive. It is in pardoning that we are pardoned. And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
How can I be an instrument of peace in my piece of the world?
Do I announce peace as I go about my day?
Am I a peaceful person, able to receive peace?