December 2022

Missionary Meditations for priests, consecrated persons, laity


Jesus is the image of the Father and shows it with gestures and human language
(Blessed Paolo Manna)

Jesus Christ sent by the Father

From the Gospel according to John

“Philip said to him, ‘Master, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Have I been with you for so long a time and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on my own. The Father who dwells in me is doing his works.’” (Jn 14:8-10)

“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For in him were created all things in heaven and on earth, the visible and the invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers.” (Col 1:15-16)

From the Magisterium of the Catholic Church

“For Jesus Christ was sent into the world as a real mediator between God and men. Since He is God, all divine fullness dwells bodily in Him (Col. 2:9). According to His human nature, on the other hand, He is the new Adam, made head of a renewed humanity, and full of grace and of truth (John 1:14). Therefore the Son of God walked the ways of a true Incarnation that He might make men sharers in the nature of God: made poor for our sakes, though He had been rich, in order that His poverty might enrich us (2 Cor. 8:9).” (Second Vatican. Council, Decree on the Mission Activity on the Church, Ad Gentes, 3)

“[God] sent His Son, the eternal Word, who enlightens all men, so that He might dwell among men and tell them of the innermost being of God (see John 1:1-18). Jesus Christ, therefore, the Word made flesh, was sent as "a man to men." (3) He "speaks the words of God" (John 3;34), and completes the work of salvation which His Father gave Him to do (see John 5:36; John 17:4).” (Paul VI, Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation, Dei Verbum, 4)

“Going from town to town, preaching to the poorest - and frequently the most receptive - the joyful news of the fulfillment of the promises and of the Covenant offered by God is the mission for which Jesus declares that He is sent by the Father.” (Paul VI, Apostolic Exhortation on Evangelization in the Modern World, Evangelii Nuntiandi, 6)

From the writings of Blessed Father Paolo Manna

“The only Son of the Father became man in order to offer to the Father, to give Him back all those children whom sin had taken from Him and whom he redeemed at the price of His blood, thus becoming Firstborn of many brothers to whom, at His death, he gave back divine life. We have thus become children of God again, for the divine life that comes from the Father in the Son, flowing from the Son into the assumed Holy Humanity, circulates through Christ’s work in all the redeemed who are willing to accept it through Holy Baptism. What a mystery of love!” (P. Manna, Chiamati alla santità, Naples 1977, p. 22-23)

“The first supreme characteristic of Jesus is to declare Himself, to acknowledge Himself as the Son of the Father, that the Father is his beginning, that everything comes from Him. [...] He does nothing by Himself alone, but only what He sees the Father doing. His judgment is right because He does not seek his own will, but the will of the One who sent Him.” (P. Manna, Chiamati alla santità, Naples 1977, p. 24)

“The Son of God is so similar to the Father, that the Father is mirrored in Him and finds in Him all His perfections: a mirror without blemish, He is enraptured by this living likeness: ‘This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.’” (P. Manna, Chiamati alla santità, Naples 1977, p. 25)

“It is so in heaven: from the infinite love with which the Son is impelled toward the Father and which meets that of the Father proceeds the Holy Spirit, who is the substantial love of the Father and the Son. This love shines out in Jesus in a perfect way: His whole life is summed up in this love.” (P. Manna, Chiamati alla santità, Naples 1977, p. 26)

“This Jesus’ love for the Father is at the heart of all the mysteries of His life.” (P. Manna, Chiamati alla santità, Naples 1977, p. 27)

“Our Lord Himself has founded His own authority to teach upon the mission which He received from the Father.” (P. Manna, The conversion of the pagan world. A Treatise upon Catholic Foreign Missions, translated and adapted from the Italian of rev. Paolo Manna, M. Ap. by rev. Joseph F. McGlinchey, d.d., Boston, Society for the propagation of the Faith 1921, p. 3)

Questions for reflection

  • How do I live “the imitation of Christ” in my thoughts, words and acts?
  • Do others, looking at me, see in me and through me God who is Love?
  • Do I remember in everyday life that I am God’s beloved child? Do I feel proud and happy for it?


God, I thank you for the gift of life.

Bless me and help me to have a good day.

I ask You, God-Love, to be like You.

Be merciful to me today and always.

That I may be good to everyone at home and at work.

Jesus, meek and humble of heart, make my heart like Yours.