Homily for Friday of the 2nd Week in Ordinary Time Year II
Theme: A Call to be an Apostle
By: Fr. Benny Tuazon
Homily for Friday January 24 2020
(Mk. 3:13-19) Friday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time
In today’s Gospel Jesus appointed twelve apostles. They responded to His call and were named one by one. Interestingly, it happened on top of the mountain which is a symbol of divine presence.
Naming a person is significant in the Catholic Faith. Naming in the name of the Lord means ownership by God and submission to His will. Thus, when a baby is brought to the church to be baptized, the baby is given a Christian name. It is hoped that the child will grow up in the faith inspired by the name.
Choosing a name, therefore is important. It should not be based on the name of who was popular at the time, whim of parents, uniqueness, etc., but on what will propagate the faith and challenge the child. That was why, before, newly baptized children were named after the saints and Christian virtues. It was hoped that the child will imbibe the lives of the saints they were named after. Hopefully, the Christian experience of their patron saint will guide them to be a good Christian.
To be an apostle is a call. It was not a simple following of and listening to Jesus. They were expected to be eyewitnesses to Jesus. Later, they will give testimony to everything Jesus said and did. It was the aim of Jesus to let His life and ministry be shared as Good News to everyone. John specifically stated that in his letter. This distinguished them from disciples. That was the controversy on Paul who claimed to be an apostle but only became a convert only after the risen Jesus appeared to him on the way to Damascus. Paul claimed that Jesus’ appearance before him and, later, his faithfulness to the Gospel in his proclamations were deserving of him to be called an apostle.
The distinction may have generated a controversy during the time of the early Christians but not anymore. The succeeding generations should be more concerned in knowing and living the faith. The apostles and the early Christians had done their share of transmitting the faith started by the apostles. The responsibility has now become ours. We were made an “apostle” when we were baptized. Our baptism is both a gift and a task. We were given a new life but at the same time, we witness the faith to others.