In the Gospel of St. Luke chapter
five, Jesus is busy engaged in His
apostolic work of preaching the Word of God.
The Apostles were fishing without any success. However, Jesus asks Peter
to let Him in his boat, and Jesus continues teaching from the boat of Peter.
After Jesus has finished His teaching He tells Peter to drop the nets for the
catch. Even though Peter has worked hard all night and does not expect any
success at that time and place, still he obeys Jesus and lowers the nets. The result was so fantastic that Peter had to
call his mates to help him to pull in the abundant catch. Why such a catch? For
the simple reason that Peter was with Jesus in the boat, he listened to the
Words of Jesus and He obeyed Jesus by dropping the nets at the Lord’s command.
Like Peter we are called to catch
fish. Jesus said, “You will now be fishers of men.” That is the purpose of the
apostolic life--- to fish men; in other words to drop the nets and save souls.
Following are fifteen concrete
suggestions on how all of us can be “fishers of men” to be true apostles and to
collaborate with Jesus in saving immortal souls for the Kingdom of God. Prayerfully read--- better yet, meditate—on
these suggestions! Then choose whatever
project the Holy Spirit inspires in you, talk it out with your spiritual
director, and then GO FISHING!!!!!
Family prayer. Encourage the family
to bless the meals before eating!
Family Rosary. “The family that prays together stays
HOLY IMAGES. Replace mundane and worldly images (Calendars
or Almanacs) with Holy Images and paintings of Jesus, Mary, the angels and
ENTHRONEMENT. Enthrone the most
Sacred Heart of Jesus, the Immaculate Heart of Mary and Divine Mercy in your
home. May Jesus reign as King and Mary as Queen.
BIBLE. Enthrone the Bible in a prominent place in
between two candles. However, make sure that it is not simply a decoration but
to be read and meditated. The saying is true: “He who has a Bible that is
falling apart will not have his life falling apart.”
LIBRARY. Have a good library with good books: Bible,
the lives of the saints, examination of conscience, and the writings of the
Popes, the Fathers and Doctors of the Church, as well as good catholic
magazines or newspapers. Reading of a
good book could save a soul! (Example of
Video/DVD LIBRARY. In the modern electronic world we should keep
up with the times. Especially in the past ten to fifteen years, Ignatius Press
has done marvels in not only publishing excellent books but also in making excellent
movies (DVD’s), especially of the lives of the saints. Worthy of mention are
St. John Bosco, Padre Pio, St. Rita, Bakhita, Mother Teresa of Calcutta,
Molokai and Fr. Damian, St. Rita of Cascia, St. Augustine and the Popes: Pope
John XXIII, Pope Paul VI, Pope John Paul I, and of course Blessed Pope John
Paul II---- and these are just a handful among a multitude!
MOVIE NIGHT! These videos or DVD’s are not meant to
simply collect dust, but to be seen! Choose a night every week to be family
night. Buy Pizza and watch the life of a saint together and then discuss it
afterward. This could be a very powerful means by which you can evangelize your
family using modern electronic media! Go
MONTHLY CONFESSION. Let the Dad decide and organize and carry out
the monthly day/night of confession. All must go! Why? We are all sinners, except Jesus and
Mary! Let Mom and Dad go first so as to give good example to the children. Example speaks more powerful than words. The Hispanics have a proverb: “El ejemplo
arrastra”—example pulls (drags).
APOSTOLATE! With the whole family why
not do some type of Apostolate together as a team and as a family? There are many options to choose from! As a family walk and pray the Rosary in front
of an abortion mill in defense of the unborn child. This apostolate will leave an indelible
impression on the children even into their adult years. Our contemplative life must
overflow into our active life or apostolate.
11. A MARIAN APOSTLE.
First of all be fervent and faithful in praying your own daily Rosary. Going
into the apostolic field why not get others to pray the Rosary. Start with your
family which is the “Domestic Church”. Then encourage the Rosary in your
Parish; then promote it wherever the opportunity arises.
12.BLOCK ROSARY. Get mothers and fathers to pray the Rosary on
a weekly basis in one family; then change homes and families every week. Set up
an altar with a statue of Mary, candles with the Rosaries in a basket; light a
candle and pray. Have Rosary pamphlets and Rosaries available to give as gifts.
ROSARIES. It is a very opportune time
to pray after somebody dies. Even
non-believers or Catholics that have wandered from the fold--- they are in the
millions--- are vulnerable and open to pray for a deceased loved one. Why not visit the home for nine days and
pray the Rosary nine days consecutively. This can fortify the faith of the
stronger ones and recover the faith of the weak and struggling believers!
14. APOSTLE OF THE
CONFESSION. Pope Pius XII stated: “The sin of the century is the loss of the
sense of sin.” There is an urgent
need to form the consciences of the believers. What better way than to invite
them to come back to the church by means of a sacramental confession. Have a bulletin available to give at will.
Then why not invest some resources in
acquiring a good booklet on Examination of conscience. If you like mine is
available free of charge on line. FrEdBroomblogspot.com with the title Modern Examination of Conscience. It is interesting how often people who read a
detailed Examination of Conscience will often say: “I did not know that is a sin….” And many
times! Why this response? Because a weakly formed conscience is almost
universal today. At the time of Jonah many people did not know their left hand
from their right hand. Today many people do not know their right hand from
their left hand in the spiritual life.
In sum, become an apostle of the Sacrament of Confession!
15.APOSTLE OF DIVINE
MERCY. Jesus said through the “Apostle
of Divine Mercy” Saint Faustina Kowalska that His greatest attribute is His
Infinite mercy. Blessed Pope John Paul
II reiterates this key Christian concept in his encyclical “Dives Misericordia”—God is rich in
mercy. Maybe you are called to be an
apostle of Divine mercy! How? Read the Diary of Saint Faustina and then live it
out! A concrete way that this could be
done would be to get people to pray the Chaplet of Divine Mercy at the mercy
hour (3:00 p.m.) or any time. However, there is also a special time and place
to promote this wonderful practice of Divine mercy and the praying of the
Chaplet: when somebody is on his deathbed about to pass from this life into the
next and to be judged by Our Lord and savior Jesus Christ. Why not carry on
your person the little Divine Mercy prayer cards and then pass them out free of
charge. Then get as many people to pray the Chaplet of Divine Mercy as the
dying person passes from this life into the next. The wonderful promise of Jesus
for the dying is that if somebody is praying the Chaplet of Divine mercy when
somebody is dying then this soul will attain the mercy of God and eternal
salvation. Be an Apostle of Divine
mercy! What an excellent manner to
express apostolic zeal!