Tuesday of the Twenty-Fifth Week in Ordinary Time/ September 22, 2020
Gospel: Luke 8:19-21
Friends, in today’s Gospel the Mother and Jesus’ brothers came to Him. They wish to see Jesus but were unable to join Him because of the crowds. Then, he was told, about their presence. He said in reply, “My mother and brothers are those who hear the word of God and act on it.”
It is not enough to hear God’s words. One should live it! This is the secret of achieving the Kingdom of God. All saints, do not only ‘store’ God’s words but they put it into action. They concretize it with the poor. This is also an invitation for us! If we desire to achieve the reign of God, we must hear His word and act on it.
Abba, You planted the seed in our hearts. May it grow and bear fruit abundantly as we cultivate it with our actions. Through our Lord Jesus Christ Your Son who lives with You in unity of the Holy Spirit, One God forever and ever. Amen.
Monday of the Twenty Fifth Week in Ordinary Time/ Feast of St. Matthew the Apostle/ September 21, 2020
Gospel: Matthew 9:9-13
Friends, today we celebrate the Feast day of St. Matthew, one of the twelve Apostles. Our reflection is taken from Catholic Saints.
St. Matthew is the author of the first Gospel. This has been the constant tradition of the Church and is confirmed by the Gospel itself. He was the son of Alpheus and was called to be an Apostle while sitting in the tax collectors place at Capernaum. Before his conversion he was a publican, i.e., a tax collector by profession. He is to be identified with the “Levi” of Mark and Luke.
His apostolic activity was at first restricted to the communities of Palestine. Nothing definite is known about his later life. There is a tradition that points to Ethiopia as his field of labor; other traditions mention of Parthia and Persia. It is uncertain whether he died a natural death or received the crown of martyrdom.
St. Matthew’s Gospel was written to fill a sorely-felt want for his fellow countrymen, both believers and unbelievers. For the former, it served as a token of his regard and as an encouragement in the trial to come, especially the danger of falling back to Judaism; for the latter, it was designed to convince them that the Messiah had come in the person of Jesus, our Lord, in Whom all the promises of the Messianic Kingdom embracing all people had been fulfilled in a spiritual rather than in a carnal way: “My Kingdom is not of this world.” His Gospel, then, answered the question put by the disciples of St. John the Baptist, “Are You He Who is to come, or shall we look for another?”
Writing for his countrymen of Palestine, St. Matthew composed his Gospel in his native Aramaic, the “Hebrew tongue” mentioned in the Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles. Soon afterward, about the time of the persecution of Herod Agrippa I in 42 AD, he took his departure for other lands. Another tradition places the composition of his Gospel either between the time of this departure and the Council of Jerusalem, i.e., between 42 AD and 50 AD or even later. Definitely, however, the Gospel, depicting the Holy City with its altar and temple as still existing, and without any reference to the fulfillment of our Lord’s prophecy, shows that it was written before the destruction of the city by the Romans in 70 AD, and this internal evidence confirms the early traditions.
A Prayer to God, Help Us to Follow St. Matthew’s Example
We thank thee, heavenly Father, for the witness of thine Apostle and evangelist Matthew to the Gospel of thy Son our Savior; and we pray that, after his example, we may with ready wills and hearts obey the calling of our Lord to follow him; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.