The La Salette Missionary - A Prophet
Do we have the courage today to call ourselves prophets? Mary comes to La Salette precisely in a prophetic spirit. Mary, like other prophets, loves her people and suffers when they turn away from God. Like the prophets, the Beautiful Lady comes to deliver a "great news", of which, after all, God is the first author. Like almost all the prophets, Our Lady calls everyone to conversion.
Mary said: "Then, my children, make this known to all my people!", Mary invites us to commit ourselves to this mission of being prophets in the world that she herself realized in her life. Yes, we must be prophets. If we want to revise our vocation, if we want to somehow renew our vocation, if we seek our deepest religious identity, we must obviously rediscover the prophetic character of our vocation. Who, then, is a religious-prophet?
A prophet, before he utters a word, always listens. The prophet who does not listen ultimately has nothing to say. He fails to give a meaningful answer, a divine answer to the questions that the world poses. It can only feed the world with its own ambiguous wisdom, but he is unable to give the world anything more than what each person can find alone in a public library. He may be educated, but he is not a prophet. His prophecy is devoid of content. If we want to renew, revive our vocation, we must start from listening.
The La Salette Missionary - Prophet, when he heard or when he heard the Word of God, is a sign of the Kingdom of God in the world. But is it necessary to ask a question, is this sign, which we are today, is well defined, clear, and a visible sign? Or to serve the world, do we have to be identified with the world? And because of this only a few can recognize us as religious. By bringing gospel values into our lives, we become "the salt of the earth" but what is the taste of this salt? Maybe, it no longer tastes? Or maybe we have already deprived of the lifestyle of its evangelical flavor?
The La Salette Missionary - Prophet, who has already listened to the Word and who has become a sign for the world, is also called concretely to carry out the mission entrusted to him. We can generally describe this mission with a sentence: "Awaken the world". Each sign has meaning only then when it is needed by someone. We cannot, therefore, close ourselves inside our homes, separate ourselves from the world. We must bring the Word to others. We must become the hands of Divine Mercy. We must, like Mary and the prophets, with all the love of which we are capable, awaken the world, give hope and invite for conversion.
Dear Confreres. Our concern for religious vocations must start from the recognition of our prophetic religious identity. When Elisha recognized Elijah as a prophet, he immediately followed him, learning from him the relationship with God. He was not attracted by the fact that he "felt good" with the master, but the greatness of the mission and the grace of God that accompanied. We too, when in our vocation we discover its prophetic dimension, will make our life and our vocation beautiful. And only then the beauty of the mission entrusted to us by God become attractive to many young people. Let us, therefore, become prophets!
Fr. Marcin Sitek MS