108 is a free telephone number for emergency services in India, currently operational in around 22 States of the country.
The 108 Emergency Response Service is a free emergency service providing integrated medical, police and fire emergency services.
It’s interesting to see that there are different versions to tell why this number 108 is chosen as the ’emergency number”.
One explanation (which some of us would have seen in the form of WhatsApp msgs or multimedia photos) is this…
…. ‘108’ is a number derived from the Gospel of Matthew Chapter 10, verse 8.
What is Mt 10:8? “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons”
This message of the Gospel reaches out as an aid and help in times of emergency to those in trouble and difficulty.
The Gospel of the Day contains this “emergency verse” in the mission commission that Jesus entrusts to his chosen Twelve.
Jesus has already inaugurated His mission of spreading the Kingdom of God.
This mission is characterized especially by reaching out to those in need and those in tribulations…
• To the sick, with the medicine of healing and comfort
• To the suppressed, with the balm of acceptance and love
• To the sinner, with the comfort of forgiveness and mercy
The chosen Twelve are also entrusted with this same commission of bringing the Kingdom of God to the lives of people: “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons” (Mt 10: 8)
The Kingdom of God becomes a sign and symbol of bringing healing and wholeness to people.
This is the mandate that is entrusted to each one of us, as well, as Christians.
The Gospel of the Day invites us to adopt some important traits in our life as a Christian: Being a source of encouragement in the “emergency” situations of the lives of people.
>> Can I be a person who can be reached out, in consolation..
… when people undergo problems, crisis and face difficulties in life?
>> Can I be a person who can be an encouragement…
… when people pass through the lowly valleys of discouragement and despair in life?
>> Can I be a person who can be a healing balm and a soothing medicine…
…when people face immense heartbreaks and painful moments in life?
Jesus is an answer and solution in any “emergency” situation.
• It is in Him we find our strength.
• It is in Him we find our remedy.
Today we seek the Intercession of St Ignatius Delgado
St Ignatius Delgado was a Dominican Priest and served as a Missionary in Vietnam
>> He was among the many martyrs who watered the soil of faith in Vietnam, with their blood.
He was canonized by Pope St John Paul II in 1988.
May the intercession of this Faithful and Bold Missionary…
… help us to defend the Truth, even in times of emergency!
God Bless! Live Jesus!