Feast of St. Matthias, Apostle

In today’s reading from Acts, we hear almost everything we know about today’s saint, St. Matthias. We know that He had been following Jesus from the time of His baptism, that he continued to follow Jesus through His public ministry, and that He was a witness to the Resurrection. On this basis, the Apostles consider Matthias and several others as a possible replacement for Judas, eventually settling on Matthias. Not because of any noteworthy deeds which he did (none are mentioned), but because when lots were drawn, “the lot fell upon Matthias.”

Accustomed as we are in the modern world to a democratic, meritocratic procedure, all of this can sound fairly jarring to us. Even after Matthias was made an apostle, no great deeds were attributed to him. Miraculous events and pious legends surround many of the other apostles, but not Matthias. But this is a healthy reminder to us. We are used to valuing a person because of their use, because of what they can do or have done. The simplicity of Matthias, however, challenges this. In Matthias, we see that perhaps the most important thing is not what great deeds we do to be remembered throughout history, but whether we have been faithful to the Lord.

May 14th, 2014