/ 30. September 2011 18:50
Goal of Missionary Ministry
Over the decades we have seen a development in the purpose of missionary ministry. In the past we heard of the missionary going out to "save souls" for Christ by baptizing any people they encountered who were not already baptized.
The Proclamation of the Gospel remains the motivating force in missionary work. But as St. James says:
"What good is it to profess faith without practicing it? If a brother or a sister has nothing to wear and no food for the day, and you say to them, “Good-bye and good luck? Keep warm and well fed,” but do not meet their bodily needs, what good is that? So it is with the faith that does nothing in practice. It is thoroughly lifeless.” (James 2:14-17).
The missionary today addresses the spiritual, social, political and economic needs of the people they serve. As theology after Vatican Council II addressed not just the spiritual aspect of the person but a holistic perspective (body and soul) so too must the missionary make Christ known to the entire person.
The goal of the missionary today is to care for the spiritual and human needs of the people they serve.