“THE LORD HAS SHOWN HIS DELIVERANCE TO THE NATIONS” (Ps 98:2)
⏰Memorial of St. Barnabas (11 June 2020)
📖Acts 11:21b-26, 13:1-3; Ps 98:1, 2-3ab, 3cd-4, 5-6 (R.v.2b); Matt 10:7-13
In celebrating the lives of the saints, the Church invites us to emulate their faith and virtues (cf. Heb 13:7) and, with her belief on the communion of the saints, prays for their intercession on our behalf.
The name “Barnabas” means “son of encouragement or consolation” (Acts 4:36). That name indeed reflects most of his missionary works. We were told of his charity in Acts 4:36 and he must have contributed in encouraging others to do the same (Acts 11:28-30). Then, at Antioch, he encouraged the believers to remain faithful (Acts 11:23).
We cannot completely articulate his life and works in this little space but the Bible used one simple sentence to summarize him, “He was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith” (Acts 11:24). Anyone who is a messenger of the Good News must also try to be good, otherwise, he might be considered fake and so, unacceptable.
We all, as members of Christ’s faithful, are also his disciples, commissioned to carry the good news to all creation. Let us learn from St. Barnabas the virtue of being like the message we preach, so that we shall win more souls for Christ.
⚠DO NOT FORGET! Freely we received and freely we must give; materialism is anti-discipleship (cf. Matt 10:8-9). Salvation is not for sale. God has made it free for the nations. We must help him to let it reach them at no further cost.
👉So, do people pay consultation fee before they see me?
👉Do they have to fuel my car and pay my workers before I visit them and attend to their needs?
👉Do they have to buy my anointing oils, miracle waters, blessed salt, etc. before they can encounter God?
👉Do I have millions in my account when there are people around me dying in penury?
If I can answer yes in any of the above or their likes, I am a fake apostle. I do not deserve the name because the early Apostles, like Barnabas, spent even their own for the sake of those in need.
May God give us the grace of becoming authentic and dedicated disciples of the Good News. May he also open our eyes to the deception of fake apostles. Amen.
Have a great week ahead. Peace be with you.
And be with your spirit Fr.