Today we celebrate the feast day of SS Simon and Jude. These two men, along with the other Apostles were simple men. They did not become Apostles because of some great feats or because of some great role they played in their community or because they came from influential families. They were ordinary folk, but they were ready to hear the voice of God. And Jesus called them. We don’t know why he chose these men from the other disciples anymore than we can know why he calls us to our path in life. Throughout life, when we meet another crisis, when we are faced with yet one more challenge or problem, or sometimes even when we realize we are gifted with a special blessing, we may wonder "Why me, God?" I think the answer is that Jesus has called us. Called us to experience the deaths and resurrections that mark the life of a Christian. "Come follow me," Christ tells us.
The Apostles followed Christ. Reflecting on what happened from this small group of simple men who heard their call and went out and converted the world, it is easy to dispel any doubts about our faith. Started by a group of twelve, with Christ as the foundation, the Church has continued to grow and thrive for over two thousand years. From a small town, it has spread throughout the world. Isn’t that unbelievable? Isn’t that awesome?
How do we emulate the zeal of Simon or the simple faith of Jude? Do we listen to the voice of Christ as he calls us to evangelize the word? How do we celebrate this Church which is continuingly as Paul told the Ephesians "being built together into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.?" How are we following Christ? How are we being Christian?
Mary Lou Butler is a former staff member and is now a member of the Mater Dolorosa Passionist Retreat Center Board, Sierra Madre, California.