Feast of Ss. Simon and Jude, Apostles
Today we celebrate the feast day of Ss. Simon and Jude. There is not much known about these two men who were counted among the twelve apostles of Jesus. As apostles they were charged with the task of preserving the most important elements of Jesus’ teaching and preaching and handing it onto future generations.
In today’s readings, we prayed Psalm 19:5a,’ Their message goes out through all the earth.’ This was the role that Simon and Jude played and it is our role today. As followers of Jesus Christ we are all commissioned as members of the baptized faithful to share the message of Jesus through words and actions.
Pope Francis tells us in Evangelii Gaudium, "Each and every baptized person is called to speak of their faith and invite others to share it. In this way we become ‘missionary disciples’ just as the first followers of Christ were."
How do WE, as ‘missionary disciples’ share our faith and spread the message of Christ? Maybe we do so as a catechist in the parish religious education program, or one who coaches the soccer team or leads a small faith group. Maybe you work with the St Vincent de Paul group and meet with folks who are down and out and in need of a helping hand. As parents you model the love Jesus has for his followers as you go about the daily routine of loving and caring for your children.
For me, RCIA is a place where I experience ‘fertile ground’ that nurtures me in living out the call to be a ‘missionary disciple’. It is in the sharing of the answers to the simple question, ‘Where have you seen God this week or how have you been the face of Jesus for another?’ It is evident that the Spirit of God is present in the faith stories shared by catechumens, candidates, sponsors and team. It is a humbling experience to share ‘holy ground’ each week with these ‘missionary disciples’. It gives me energy and hope to continue to spread the message through all the earth.
My prayer for all of you is that you find a place, a person or persons, an event or process that nurtures your call to ‘missionary discipleship’ so that together we can all proclaim the message of Jesus Christ to all the earth. The Spirit of God that led Jesus to appoint the twelve apostles is the same spirit that will lead and sustain us.
Theresa Secord is a Pastoral Associate at St. Agnes Parish, Louisville, Kentucky.