As Paul and his companions continue their journey (today’s first reading: Acts 16:1-10), guided by the Holy Spirit and Jesus, they finally are allowed to continue their mission in Macedonia. This is particularly striking and poignant to me as I will very soon become very familiar with a different Macedonia much closer to home.
But the message is quite clear: the Holy Spirit sends evangelizers to the places where they are most needed. In the vision described in the headline, a Macedonian makes this plea to Paul. Maybe the Macedonians themselves did not realize this need, but the Spirit of Jesus, interceding for them, knew best what was imperative for that place.
Really, though, what place does not need the Good News proclaimed to it? This is an excellent reminder to all of us of our call to catechize and evangelize at all times and in all places. As I consider my opportunity in Macedonia, I realize I need to be more fervent in my efforts (through prayer and much assistance from the Lord) to advance the kingdom whenever and wherever I am.
To bring the point home even more strongly, after Mass today, before the tabernacle, I opened up the Bible randomly and my eyes alighted on the beginning of Acts chapter 20:
Paul had the disciples summoned and, after encouraging them, he bade them farewell and set out on his journey to Macedonia. As he traveled throughout those regions, he provided many words of encouragement for them. (vv 1-2)
So I must encourage renewal and be encouraged in my mission to spread the Gospel.