Feast of Saints Simon and Jude, Apostles
Our Gospel is as simple as it is familiar: Luke’s account of Christ calling His apostles. By looking at Mark’s account of the same event we receive a crucial insight into the heart of Christ. Notice that Mark writes, “He appointed twelve [whom he also named apostles] that they might be with him…” (3:14)
Jesus chose them, as He chooses each of us, not because of their qualifications but precisely because they are utterly unqualified. He sees in Peter’s occasional dim-wits, Judas Iscariot’s penchant for theft, Simon’s zealousness and the many other shortcomings of the apostles an emptiness that could be filled, a raw potential that could be gloriously realized: humble hearts that could be filled. In other words, He saw in them all of mankind, handfuls of dust that could be formed each into a new man, the kind of man that could be with God. The next three years would shape each of the apostles in ways no one could have expected, from simple fishermen to missionaries and martyrs, from tax collectors to generous ministers of Christ’s grace. What happened to Judas Iscariot, many theories abound, but what is more pressing is to wonder: what will happen to us?
As we continue this week down the path of humility, remember your own Baptismal call: Christ has chosen you, as He chose Simon and Jude, to be with Him. This is not because we are worthy of so high a call; rather it is because He is so worthy of us answering. Could anything humble us further than to be called, by name, to share a life with the Son of God? Could anything be more humbling than to ponder who we might become should we give a whole-hearted answer?