First Reading: Col 2:6-15; Psalm: 145. R. v. 9a; Gospel: Lk 6:12-19
CALLED AND CHOSEN
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
Jesus wrote no book on his teachings. He knew his time on earth was limited and needed some men that he might write his message upon them. Jesus already had many followers (disciples); but he needed something more than a follower for his message to live on. And so he went to the mountains and prayed all through the night. When it was day, he called his disciples and from among them chose twelve men whom he called apostles. Jesus came down from the mountain with the twelve and they took their stand on a level place facing the crowd; a sign that they have been separated for a different mission.
A disciple is different from an apostle. The word “disciple” means “a learner.” Every Christian is a disciple of Christ who learns about the kingdom through the teachings of the Scriptures. But an apostle is one called and chosen by Jesus to share in his ministry and sent forth with authority to proclaim the gospel. The twelve were chosen by Jesus to become eye-witnesses to his ministry so that they can give a first-hand account of his teachings when he is no more. Before his ascension, Jesus would give them the authority to make disciples of all nations and to teach all that he had commanded them (Mt 28:16-20).
Through the gift of the Holy Spirit and apostolic succession, the message of the gospel has been kept alive till today. God still calls and chooses men whom he sets apart with authority primarily to preach the gospel. They are the pastors of the Church today. Let us pray specially for them who are flawed but graced human beings that God may rekindle their zeal for the task entrusted to them so that the message of the gospel may reach out to the far ends of the earth; especially to those who eagerly thirst for the salvation of their souls.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Lord God, bless our world and all those called to various vocations in life; especially your priests that they may all be committed to their ministry. Amen.