Daily Reflection for Thursday, October 28, 2021
Peace and Blessings, Friends and Parishioners,
We encourage you to reflect on Thursday’s readings at this link: CLICK HERE
If you prefer to use your own Bible, the readings are:
First Reading: Ephesians 2:19-22
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 19:2-5
Gospel: Luke 6:12-16
Our reflection on Thursday’s readings on the Feasts of Sts. Simon and Jude, Apostles:
You also are being built together into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit. Ephesians 2: 22
Today the Church celebrates the feasts of two of the less celebrated Apostles, St. Simon and St. Jude. They get very little attention in the Gospels and today’s reading doesn’t do a lot to fill us in. The readings today include the story of Jesus’ choosing the twelve apostles from among his many disciples, but they don’t provide any explanation as to why these twelve men, and more specifically, Simon and Jude, were chosen.
Biblical accounts of these two saints are pretty sparse. Simon is referred to as the Zealot. Whether this description meant that Simon was particularly religious, zealous, or whether he was part of the Zealots, a revolutionary political group in first century Palestine that sought to overthrow the Romans using violence, we really don’t know. Religious scholars seem to be divided and there doesn’t seem to be solid evidence one way or another. Jude’s life is even more of an unknown. Tradition says that they traveled to spread the Good News after Pentecost and were martyred together in modern day Iran. This is why they share the same feast day. However it could easily be the feast day of the unsung followers of Jesus.
We have only partial accounts of the major events of Christ’s life and ministry and almost all involve his inner circle, but Jesus had numerous followers prior to this point in His ministry as this reading mentions. I wonder what those early followers were like. What were they looking for when they began to follow Jesus? Were they, like the Apostles, called individually or did their friends and family bring them to see this new teacher? I always found it amazing that the Twelve dropped everything to follow Jesus. I wonder if these folks did the same. Maybe they didn’t and clung to some of their old lives and that’s why they weren’t chosen to be one of the Twelve. Surely some of these other followers of Jesus felt slighted when they were overlooked and not included in Christ’s inner circle. Even the Apostles argued amongst themselves about which of them was more important, so it would seem natural that some of the others that were not part of the Chosen felt left out.
Yet even the unknown and anonymous followers of Christ are important. My first instinct was to feel bad for Simon and Jude that they get short shrift in biblical accounts, but I was looking at things the wrong way. They were among the Twelve who got to interact with Christ. You and I are not part of this inner circle, but He still died for us. We are His adopted sons and daughters, who are called to be a “dwelling place for God.” How truly humbling that even we, ordinary men and women that we are, were considered to be part of God’s family through the gift of Jesus.
Today I call you to revel in the gift of God’s love of us and carry on the mission of the unsung Apostles.
Peace and blessings,