Monday, May 14, 2012

St. Matthias, Apostle

Today is the feast of the apostle who was chosen to take the place of Judas who betrayed Jesus and then, in despair, killed himself. It is as though he was specially chosen to make up for the evil that Judas had done. In each of our lives we are called to “make reparation,” to balance the evil that is done in the world with good. Let us commit ourselves to doing this as we pray for Pope Benedict’s monthly intentions and reflect on part of his 2006 General Audience where he talked about St. Matthias.

In conclusion, we want to remember he who, after Easter, was elected in place of the betrayer. In the Church of Jerusalem two were proposed to the community, and then lots were cast for their names: "Joseph called Barsabbas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias" (Acts 1: 23). Precisely the latter was chosen, hence, "he was enrolled with the eleven apostles" (Acts 1: 26). We know nothing else about him, if not that he had been a witness to all Jesus' earthly events (cf. Acts 1: 21-22), remaining faithful to him to the end. To the greatness of his fidelity was later added the divine call to take the place of Judas, almost compensating for his betrayal. We draw from this a final lesson: while there is no lack of unworthy and traitorous Christians in the Church, it is up to each of us to counterbalance the evil done by them with our clear witness to Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

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