Today the Church celebrates the feast of St. Luke the Evangelist. St. Luke is the author of two books of the New Testament, the Gospel of Luke and Acts of the Apostles. In fact, Acts may be considered a “sequel” to Luke’s Gospel, as that story picks up right where Luke ends.
St. Luke is the only author of all the New Testament writers of a Gentile background. This gives him a bit of a unique perspective on things. Luke was a traveling companion of St. Paul, as we see in today’s first reading from 2 Timothy 4. At the time that Paul wrote this letter, all of his other companions had ditched on him. He writes, “Luke is the only one with me.” Luke was a physician, a learned man.
In his Gospel, Luke paints Jesus as a champion of the poor and downtrodden. Luke’s Gospel includes many mentions and stories about women that are not mentioned elsewhere. Perhaps this is partly a function of his Gentile upbringing. Whatever the case, we thank God today for St. Luke, for giving us an account of the life of Jesus and the early Church. St. Luke is the patron saint of artists, physicians, surgeons, students and butchers.
Father, we thank you for the sure testimony of St. Luke. Through his intercession, may we all come to know you better. Amen.