People are always seeking a sign. In the Gospel reading today from Luke 11, Jesus addresses this. While the people were insisting on a sign, Jesus told them that they would receive no sign, except the sign of Jonah. Jonah came preaching repentance, and the people listened. Unfortunately, this wasn’t the case when Jesus, something greater than Jonah, gave the same message.
In the first reading today, we begin a journey through the book of Romans. St. Paul starts his letter by way of introduction, telling his readers of his qualifications. “Paul, a slave of Christ Jesus, called to be an Apostle and set apart for the Gospel of God…Through him we have received the grace of apostleship…” Notice the difference in those two uses of Apostle. Paul refers to himself as an Apostle, with a capital “A,” but then speaks in the plural “we” with a small “a.” There is a reason, and a difference.
Paul was given the title of Apostle. The word apostle means “one who is sent.” Thus Paul refers to our apostleship as we, too, are sent by God to bring the Gospel to all. While we do not share the title of Apostle (only the Twelve and their successors share that title), we do share in their mission of apostleship. Therefore, all of those who are “sent” can be called apostles. That’s you and me! I hope that we will take this call to be an apostle seriously. Embrace your apostleship today!
Father, we thank you for allowing us to be apostles. As you send us out into the world, give us the same spirit of boldness that you gave the Apostles. Amen.
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