Archbishop Oscar Romero was a martyr for the faith. He was gunned down as he was celebrating Mass for a woman that had been killed the year before by government hit-squads. They wanted to silence Bishop Romero because he spoke of how God cared for the poor, the oppressed, and all those shoved to the margins of society. We see this throughout Jesus’ ministry. And in remembrance of him, fellow Bishop Untener gave these words. It is entitled “Prophets of a Future Not Our Own”
It helps now and then to step back and take a long view. The Kingdom is not only beyond our efforts, it is beyond our vision.
We accomplish in our lifetime only a fraction of the magnificent enterprise that is God’s work. Nothing we do is complete, which is another way of saying that the kingdom always lies beyond us. No statement says all that could be said. No prayer fully expresses our faith. No confession brings perfection, no pastoral visit brings wholeness. No program accomplishes the Church’s mission. No set of goals and objectives include everything.
This is what we are about. We plant the seeds that one day will grow. We water the seeds already planted knowing that they hold future promise.We lay foundations that will need further development. We provide yeast that produces effects far beyond our capabilities.
We cannot do everything, and there is a sense of liberation in realizing this. This enables us to do something, and to do it very well. It may be incomplete, but it is a beginning, a step along the way, an opportunity for the Lord’s grace to enter and do the rest. We may never see the end results, but that is the difference between the master builder and the worker.
We are workers, not master builders, ministers, not messiahs. We are prophets of a future not our own.
We are a people of hope who trust that God works through our efforts and also trust the ways that God Almighty go well beyond us. We help in the plan of what God is doing in our communities in healing, working on each other’s behalf, showing kindness, and giving encouragement. God’s plan and God is also greater than us moving with the Spirit in ways we can barely see and rarely comprehend. And Praise to God for being bigger than our vision and our dreams – and also regarding us enough to allow us to take part in his.