Commentary on the Gospel of
Throughout the Book of Acts, we realize how the Church spreads. Today’s Reading gives us several clues about evangelizing nowadays. The meeting between Paul and Lydia is a beautiful guide to understanding how we can continue our evangelization mission.
Paul didn’t wait until someone got close to him. He moved outside the city where they thought people gathered to pray. This is the first step: move on and get close to people. Pope Francis has told us that our church must get close to people and specially to suffering people. In our everyday life we can get close to many people and share with them our time.
The second step is the Gospel announcement. Paul began speaking to the women. They were listening. Nowadays our announcement is our life’s testimony. The Lord gives us the Holy Spirit to live our everyday life as Jesus’ disciples; giving testimony at home, at work, in the street and in everything we do along the day. John’s Gospel warns us that this is not easy, but he encourages us to trust the holy Spirit. In order to overcome any difficulty, we can find in our life, we ought to get close to Jesus and care for our relationship with him.
The third step is the acceptance of the faith. Lydia feels that Paul’s announcement connects with her life, connects with her feelings and that is why she adhered to the faith. After that came the Baptism. She gets baptised with all her family. This is the fourth step, when she becomes part of the community. We need the community to live our faith. We cannot live it alone.
Finally, the faith needs an expression. And Lydia express her faith with the sign of hospitality. Hospitality is a very good sign with which to express our faith, but I am sure that we can find more signs to express it and make it meaningful for today’s people.
We can think that today’s readings are very simple, but they can light up our day to live it as disciple-missionaries, trusting in the force of the Holy Spirit and getting close to people to announce the Gospel.