Performance Still 1985,
Performance photo by Mona Hatoum (Born 1952),
Photograph, gelatin silver print on paper, mounted on aluminium,
Performance done in 1985, photograph executed in 1995,
© Mona Hatoum

Performance Still 1985,
Performance photo by Mona Hatoum (Born 1952),
Photograph, gelatin silver print on paper, mounted on aluminium,
Performance done in 1985, photograph executed in 1995,
© Mona Hatoum

Gospel of 25 September 2019

Take nothing for the journey

Luke 9: 1-6

Jesus called the Twelve together and gave them power and authority over all devils and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal. He said to them, ‘Take nothing for the journey: neither staff, nor haversack, nor bread, nor money; and let none of you take a spare tunic. Whatever house you enter, stay there; and when you leave, let it be from there. As for those who do not welcome you, when you leave their town shake the dust from your feet as a sign to them.’ So they set out and went from village to village proclaiming the Good News and healing everywhere.

Reflection on the Performance Photograph

Our photograph today is by Mona Hatoum, an artist born in Beirut to a Palestinian family in 1952 and has been living in London since 1975. She first became known in the early 1980s for a series of performance and video pieces where she explored the fragility and strength of the human condition under duress, exploring conflict and contradictions in our world. The work we are looking at today, shows the conflict between walking barefooted or with shoes; both still involve walking and do the same thing, but the experience is very different… This photo was taken during a performance which Hatoum carried out in Brixton where she walked for nearly an hour. It depicts Doc Martin boots being dragged behind her bare feet while attached (more like shackled) to her ankles by laces. When Jesus speaks today about walking on our own journeys, he tells us not to over-pack or over-prepare, as the danger is that our focus might shift to our own comforts and needs, rather than remain focussed on the actual journey and our destination.

If we truly can live in the realisation that God did already provide everything that we have received so far (health, job, family, friends…), then it does indeed comfort us, as we realise not only that He has already provided us with so much, but that He will remain to do so in the future. If we are focussed solely on God, only then can God’s grace work through us unrestrictedly.

Christ is telling us that our baggage allowance is zero… I don’t think any of us have ever travelled that way!… So he is calling us to do something radical, but then also comforts us at the same time He is there with us every step of the way. The very last word of today’s Gospel reading is the word ‘everywhere’. It means that Christ’s presence and God’s grace are very real and extended to us beyond all human boundaries…. Wherever we walk… whatever shoes we wear… whatever our journeys will be… He is with us everywhere. 

Share this Gospel Reading

Did you like this Gospel reading and art reflection?

Join in the discussion about this artwork & Gospel reading

Subscribe
Notify of
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Readings related to Luke 9: 1-6

27 September 2019

Luke 9: 18-22

Feast Day of Saint Vincent de Paul

28 September 2020

Luke 9:46-50

Anyone who welcomes this little child in my nam...

4 October 2023

Luke 9:57-62

Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi

28 September 2021

Luke 9:51-56

Jesus resolutely took the road for Jerusalem an...

Join our community

In addition to receiving our Daily Gospel Reading and Art Reflection, signing up for a free membership allows you to: 

The mission of Christian Art is to offer a daily Gospel Reading paired with a related work of art and a short reflection. Our goal is to help people grow closer to God through the magnificent pairing of art and the Christian faith.

CONNECT WITH US

Join over 70,000 people who receive our daily Gospel Reading and Art Reflection

Skip to content