Today on this feast of St. Luke, I read in his account (LK 10:1-9) about the appointment “by the Lord Jesus,” of 72 disciples whom he sent ahead of him in pairs to every town and place he intended to visit.” “The harvest is abundant,” he said, “but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.” Then Luke relates the simple (but not easy) directions from Jesus for how they are to act: taking nothing for the journey but depending on the people they meet for their needs. “The Kingdom of God,” he says, “is at hand for you.”
I find it ironic that in my e-mail this morning I found the FutureChurch FOCUS newsletter on this – Day 9 – of the Amazon Synod which is replete with stories and pleas about the value that it would be to the Roman Catholic Church to allow women deacons and married clergy. In places where the numbers of ordained ministers for such sacred duties are very small or non-existent, we ought to open our “Church eyes” to the people who are functioning in those ministries “as if” — in recognition that, just as in the time of the Lord Jesus, the Kingdom of God is at hand for us!
P.S. Luke was the only one of the gospel writers — perhaps the closest associates in the ministry of Jesus — who was a Gentile. He wrote not only the gospel attributed to him but also the book we call the Acts of the Apostles. What would we have done without him?!