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.
You’ve heard the old saying, “Blood is thicker than water.” It means that family ties are stronger than those of non-family members. This is true in our spiritual ties, too. We are brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus. He is our brother, and we are all united to the Father through the Holy Spirit. While all earthly families have some degree of dysfunction, hopefully when things get tough, we can rise above those things. Can we say the same of our spiritual family?
Father, we thank you for counting us a part of your family, united to you with our brother, Jesus. May we always treat each other as family. Amen.