John the Baptist was a revered figure in the early Church. In the Middle Ages, hundreds of religious groups and churches were placed under his patronage. Many follower of the Lord originally been disciples of the Baptist. Many remained followers of the Baptist even after his death.
John represents the continual need we have for repentance to prepare for the irruption of God’s presence into our lives. Secondly, John’s whole mission in life was to point the way to Christ. That is very much the heart of the Christian vocation. Paul tells us that John set the stage, Isaiah speaks about a mysterious suffering servant which the Church has always identified as Christ but which we take here as referring to John as well. “I called you … though you thought it was ll in vain … now you will have glory through me.”
Each of us is created for a purpose. Our genes come from our parents. Our unique identity comes from God. We can never list all the events we set in motion. Like John, we bring people to the light in ways we cannot anticipate. If we carry a burden, experience a tragedy or have seen the seamy side of life – these can be ways that we are able to connect with others. We all have the power to enlarge the lives of others, heal their wounds and assist them through complex problems.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, give Your people grace to enter on the way of salvation. As they hearken to the voice of John, the Lord’s herald, bring them safely to Jesus, whom John foretold. We pray this in the most precious name of our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Jakarta, 24 June 2019
A Christian Pilgrim