We are called to live in His love and offer it to others
Reflections on the readings for the Feast of St. Matthias (May 14, 2021): ACTS 1:15-17,2026; PS 113:1-2,3-4,5-6,7-8; JN 15:9-17
MISSIO offers “Mission In Scripture” to nurture a missionary heart, providing reflections on the missionary themes in the readings of Sundays, Feast Days and Holy Days.
In the Gospel for this feast, we hear Jesus talk about the love between His Father and Himself. It extended to His followers and culminates in their love for Him and for each other.
Today we salute the life and faithful dedication of St. Matthias who became the Twelfth Apostle when he was selected to replace Judas Iscariot. St. Peter put the choice of a new Apostle into the hands of the many men and women who gathered with him following Christ’s return to heaven. Two men who had witnessed the public ministry of our Lord from its earliest days were proposed and, after praying, the disciples used lots to choose Matthias. Like his fellow Apostles, Matthias journeyed to a number of places to share the Good News. While we have no more specific reference to him or his mission, it is generally thought that he preached in Judea and Ethiopia and then went on to Cappadocia in Turkey and along the Caspian Sea. Like virtually all the others Apostles, St. Matthias was martyred. According to tradition, he was beheaded for his faith in our Lord.
In the Gospel for this feast, we hear Jesus talk about the love between His Father and Himself. It extended to His followers and culminates in their love for Him and for each other. “Jesus said to His disciples: ‘As the Father love Me, so I also love you. Remain in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will remain in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commands and remain in His love.… This I command you: love one another” (John 15:9-10,17). God’s love for us and His desire for us to embrace and share His love is essential to the great gift of salvation. We need to understand that every person who follows Christ is called to live in His love and offer it to others. That includes those who are easy to love and those who are not; those who seem to deserve love, and those who do not. Not one of us can be truly worthy of God’s love on our own. Only by entrusting ourselves to Him can we be the loyal and generous people He calls us to be. The Apostles were not perfect – but they knew how to receive and to give love.
Suggested missionary action: Let us pray to St. Matthias for his help in protecting all the Church’s Missions. We can especially ask him to look after those who are helped in both body and spirit by the generous efforts of today’s missionaries.