YEAR A: HOMILY FOR MONDAY OF THE 30TH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
HOMILY THEME: REMEMBERED FOR THEIR FAITH, WHAT ABOUT YOU?
BY: Rev. Fr. Jacob Aondover ATSU
HOMILY: FEAST OF SAINTS SIMON AND JUDE, APOSTLES.
READINGS: EPHESIANS 2:19-22, PSALM 19, LUKE 6:12-19
We celebrate today Simon the zealot and Jude Thaddeus. The little known of Simon suggests he was an ardent lover of the law and as an apostle; he applied same zeal to the service of Christ. Jude, a brother of James the Less, hence cousin of Jesus, authored the last canonical epistle (Letter of St. James), which Origen described as containing strong doctrines in few lines. He preached in Palestine mainly but later advanced to Persia and Armenia where he was martyred.
The lives of these two are shrouded in obscurity and uncertainty; however, their very closeness to Christ as sharers in his redemptive work reminds us that holiness, from which stems happiness, accrues from following meticulously, Jesus’ footsteps as against being popular, famous or known everywhere (with no substance to show). This is a mistake many of us are guilty of; we go about our lives in the most conspicuous ways earning for ourselves the fame and popularity we enjoy; yet a cursory look at our credentials, shows just how distant we are from Christ. May we zealously endear ourselves to Christ whether we are known, acknowledged or not. Besides, Christianity is not a show and come what may, it will never be.
Dearly beloved, true Christianity entails being chosen like the apostles of old to be with Christ (Mk. 3:14). It entails being friends with Jesus, journeying with him no longer on the streets of Palestine but on the streets of our villages, towns, cities; in our neighbourhoods, business places, offices and everywhere we find ourselves. That is not all, Christianity as intended by Christ needs people who are ready to learn, disciples; it sure needs those who are docile to accept being sent out, apostles.
To this day, Christ needs disciples and apostles, those ordinary men who are ready to obediently go about the preaching to the whole world and making converts for him (Mt. 28:19-20). Simon and Jude and the other ten were a terrible mixture: fishermen, tax collector, zealots etc., yet they lived together; even if they argued, they never quarreled to bring about dissension. They were bonded together in Christ, and their apostolate, the evangelization of peoples submerged all their differences. We are called today to shun all our differences, go on working for Christ with our brothers and sisters as Simon a Zealot (and enemy of the Romans and their workers) lived with Matthew a tax collector (hence traitor) without issues. Paul in Ephesians 2:19-22 argue in the same line, the oneness of all Christians, for through Jesus with whom Zealots lived with tax collectors, all people form a family in God.
The apostles and prophets helped knit the Church, the family of God together as we have it today; through Christ, everyone has room in this family. People may put up their barriers; Churches may keep their communion tables for their members alone, but God will never shut anybody out! Brethren in the Lord, it is high time we realized that the unity and efficacy of the Church stems not from organization, or ritual, or liturgy; but from Christ. Now I know exactly why the Latin folks hold strongly that, “Ubi Christus, ibi ecclesia”, Where Christ is, there is the Church.
Strive to be remembered.
Strive to be celebrated
Strive to impart on the world…
FEED AND EDUCATE ONE
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