Today is the feast of St. Andrew. Andrew was the brother of Simon Peter. In the first reading from Romans 10, St. Paul asks a number of questions…”How can they hear without someone to preach? And how can people preach unless they are sent?” Did you know that the word “apostle” means “one who is sent?” St. Andrew and his brother and the rest of the Twelve were sent by Christ. We share in their apostolic mission.
Jesus spoke often of family relationships. When He wanted to really get points across, he talked in terms of family. Fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, etc. Jesus found family so important that he called not one, but two sets of brothers to be His Apostles; Andrew and Simon, James and John. Both sets of brothers were part of a family business; they were fishermen. I wonder how the rest of the people in the family business felt when the brothers left to follow this young rabbi. Could this have been the first example of dissension within families because of Jesus? Perhaps.
Remember the old song, “He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother”? It’s a song about a guy who carries his brother and how it’s not a burden because of that family bond. Even more, it reminds us that we are all brothers in the Lord. There are times when you will need to be carried, and other times when you may need to carry another. May we always carry our brother joyfully.
Father, we thank you for our brother Jesus and our common brotherhood in Him. May we bear each other’s burdens with brotherly love and strength. Amen