Fr. Antonio Pernia, SVD, former Superior General of the Society of the Divine Word, emphasizes the fundamental conversions required in mission today.
First, from activism to contemplation. The very first challenge in mission is to seek out, discern and strengthen the presence of Christ and the action of the Spirit in the world. We need to abandon the idea that contemplation is the opposite of mission. We need, rather, to understand that contemplation is a constitutive dimension of mission.
Second, from superiority to humility. Seeing mission as mission of God makes us realize that the missionary is never the “owner” or “master” of the gospel, but only its “steward” and “servant”. The approach of the missionary today must be to share the faith as a gift received from God through others.
And third, from burden to privilege. Today, we must realize that mission is not just a burden and a sacrifice but a privilege and a gift. Our call to mission is really a call to participate in God’s mission. And participation in God’s mission cannot just be a burden and a sacrifice. It must be, above all, a gift and a privilege.
Go and tell the Good News!