He said, "Elijah will indeed come and restore all things, but I tell you that Elijah has already come." (from Saturday's Gospel reading)
New video: Inspiration from your fellow subscribers
We asked some of our most active subscribers: "Why do you believe that the Good News about Jesus needs to be spread throughout the world?" Hear the inspiring answers by seven of them. Click here and watch our newest short video.
Thank you, Carlos Ribero, Tracy Pham, Lyn Liff, Jim Scofield, Annabelle Williams, Tony Oquias, and Mary Reichel for sharing yourself with us!
Reflection for Saturday: Modern-day prophets
In Saturday's Gospel reading, Jesus speaks of Elijah, because the disciples were curious about an ancient Jewish expectation that Elijah would return to announce the arrival of the Messiah. Perhaps they wondered: Would Elijah come back from the dead? Or be reincarnated perhaps? Neither of these ideas are scriptural. And so Jesus explained the truth behind the prophecy.
It wasn't about the person (Elijah) returning, but the purpose (Elijah's role in salvation). As today's first reading points out, Elijah's purpose was to turn people's hearts back to God, back to a right relationship (i.e., a true friendship) with God.
Shortly before Jesus began his public ministry and for a short while afterward, the mission of John the Baptist was the same as Elijah's. He announced the arrival of the Messiah by preaching repentance and restoring people's relationship with God so that they could recognize him in Jesus.
God is still sending out Elijahs and Johns today. In all the ways and situations that people turn away from God, the voice of restoration goes out through modern-day prophets. You, too, are a prophet whenever you invite people to turn back to Christ or to embrace the ways of Christ.
A true prophet is the voice of God's love pointing the way to healing and growth.
A successful prophet is an empathetic prophet. When have you mistakenly rejected the ways of Christ in your own behaviors and choices? Did God try to speak to you through someone in your life? Remembering this about ourselves removes arrogance and judgmentalism from our desire to call others to repentance.
With Christmas fast approaching, consider what needs healing in your relationship with Christ. The more we are healed, the better we become at helping others heal, repent, or convert to Christ.
And be assured of this: When you invest in the mission of Good News Ministries -- with your prayers, volunteer time, funding -- you support the prophet voice of our mission. You proclaim the Good News. Together, we make a bigger difference changing hearts for Christ than we could ever do separately. To continue this voice in 2018, if you haven't done so yet, please contribute generously at http://gnm.org/donate or text your donation here: http://bit.ly/2jbsQNI.
To those who have very limited funds, here's an idea: Fast for one meal and offer the sacrifice as a prayer for those who can be generous. Then send in the cost of that meal as a gift of thanks to Jesus for all he has done for you. This is a significant way to grow stronger spiritually.
To those who cannot make donations because of the country they live in and the exchange rate, be generous to another ministry that serves as the prophetic voice of Christ and offer your prayer support for Good News Ministries.
And to all: Whenever you receive our fundraising emails, which go out to all subscribers, please use them as an opportunity to pray for others who receive them, asking our Lord to help them respond to the call.
Good News prophets make a difference in the world
Thanks to those who join me in the mission of building the faith of others, Miriam M. of Italy said: "I want to thank you for all your reflections which everyday reach the deepest part of my heart, and I feel as if you were in front of me, talking to me as if you knew everything about my life. Thank you. May God bless you. I also want to tell you that as soon as I fix some money issues I'm going through and about which ones I'm praying about, I'll help you so that your messages can reach more people in need of your help."
Annabelle W. of the United Arab Emirates said: "Thank you for the wonderful daily reflections, which give so much insight and depth into the readings of the day. I am a member of the Prison Ministry of our parish and we have our weekly visits on Tuesdays. Every time I am assigned a visit, I take a copy of your Sunday reflection and share it with the inmates. The message contained is always very powerful and brings a lot of solace and comfort to them. I also get them to reflect on the questions for personal reflection and community sharing which makes the whole visit even more meaningful."
Stanley U. of Fiji said: "I just wanted to say thank you for the lovely reflections that you send out in regards to the readings of the day. It is very inspirational, encouraging and uplifting. I truly believe that the thousands of people that read your reflections have benefited from them in one way or another according to the different circumstances that they face each day, as it has me. May God continue to bless you with the continuous gifts of knowledge and wisdom that you use to write the daily reflections. I know it is not easy as it is a daily exercise that you do out of love for God and his people. Thank you again. Only God knows the amount of people that have been helped through reading your reflections."
Carolyn L. of the US said: I'm grateful to the Holy Spirit for directing me to you and to GNM. I love reading your daily reflections, and I appreciate being able to help [as a volunteer editor of transcripts of videos]. You came into my life at a perfect time - isn't that just like the Holy Spirit??!!"
Mary Ann Mlynski of the US said: "Thank you for your daily Gospel reflections. They have helped me in my Ministry of Care, taking communion to the homebound."
Mary V. of the US said: "I just LOVE everything on your website that you make available for me to learn about God so I can have a closer relationship with God. I am homebound due to my lack of health. I must tell you how grateful I am for the quality of life and life's purpose of praying for others that you have given me. I am blessed that my parish church placed your Bible insights inside of our parish bulletin [ordered from Catholic Digital Resources]; that is how I found out about your ministry. The work you are doing is saving souls and helping souls to go to Heaven. Big Hugs to you. Your website with all of its resources brings my family and I much comfort, enjoyment, quality of life and a closer relationship with Jesus."
Bill P. of the US said: "Yesterday's [July 19] reflection was on Matthew 25-27 about our impression of what our Father in heaven is like as formed from our experience with our earthly. I sent it to my eight children. One of them responded and asked me to also send it to his two oldest children, my grandchildren."
Caedmon and Nicolette of New Zealand said: "GNM has always been a source of wisdom, encouragement and clarity of God's Word to us both. And we are now very grateful that my daughter, Jemima (24 years) has found God speaking to her through it as well. May God continue to use your ministry to bring life and love to this hurting world and support us in doing the same !!!!!"
With your partnership, Good News Ministries will continue being a prophetic voice in 2018. We are almost out of funds, and it takes a staff of five, an office, and equipment to run this ministry. If you want this ministry to continue, please click http://gnm.org/donate or text your donation: http://bit.ly/2jbsQNI.
God bless you!
Every morning, I lift up in to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the fire of the Holy Spirit everyone who helps Good News Ministries in any way (donors, volunteers, prayer supporters, etc.) and all the prayer requests posted on our site.
Thank you for reading this newsletter.
Your servant in Christ,
Good News Ministries gnm.org
Keep your eyes on Jesus!
Look to the past with gratitude.
Live the present with passion.
Move into the future with hope.
Find creative ways to proclaim the gospel of joy! (Wisdom by Pope Francis)