This is my homily for the Feast of Saint Luke this morning.
Saint Luke, according to John Chrysosthom, was not only the author of the Gentile Gospel but the Acts as well. A Physician and companion of Saint Paul, he is the only one still with the Apostle to the Gentiles even at the end of his life in Rome.
In today’s account of the sending forth of the disciples, Luke uses one of his favorite phrases as Jesus sends the seventy-two forth to proclaim: “The Kingdom of God is at hand for you.”
This is the same Kingdom which Luke describes as Good news for the poor and demanding of our single-minded perseverance. To get to it requires childlike faith: for it is a Kingdom which is here now, but will come in its fulness only at the end of time.
Luke seems obsessed with the Kingdom of God, and rightly so, for as our beloved Pope Emeritus reminds us “Jesus is the Kingdom of God, because , through him, God’s Spirit acts upon the world.”
Which means the preaching of the disciples is true: the Kingdom of God is at hand for you! Jesus is at hand for you! Today. In this place. Right now. For you.
What does that mean?
It means that between you and that mid-term coming up, is Jesus. For the Kingdom of God is at hand!
It means that between you and that relationship which causes you such pain is Jesus. For the Kingdom of God is at hand!
It means that between you and that skill you cannot master or that goal you cannot achieve, or that desire you cannot fulfill is Jesus…for the Kingdom of God is at hand!
The same Jesus who first whispered in your heart, who has a plan for your life, who loves you more than you can ever know is with you in every moment, every pain, every doubt and every joy. For the Kingdom of God is as close as your next breath, and Jesus is at hand.