A reading from the Book of the Acts of the Apostles
Acts 1:15-17, 20-26
Peter stood up in the midst of the brothers and sisters
(there was a group of about one hundred and twenty persons
in the one place).
He said, “My brothers and sisters,
the Scripture had to be fulfilled
which the Holy Spirit spoke beforehand
through the mouth of David, concerning Judas,
who was the guide for those who arrested Jesus.
Judas was numbered among us
and was allotted a share in this ministry.
For it is written in the Book of Psalms:
Let his encampment become desolate,
and may no one dwell in it.
May another take his office.
Therefore, it is necessary that one of the men
who accompanied us the whole time
the Lord Jesus came and went among us,
beginning from the baptism of John
until the day on which he was taken up from us,
become with us a witness to his resurrection.”
So they proposed two, Joseph called Barsabbas,
who was also known as Justus, and Matthias.
Then they prayed,
“You, Lord, who know the hearts of all,
show which one of these two you have chosen
to take the place in this apostolic ministry
from which Judas turned away to go to his own place.”
Then they gave lots to them, and the lot fell upon Matthias,
and he was counted with the Eleven Apostles.
From the Gospel according to John
Jesus said to his disciples:
9 As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. 10 If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. 11 These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.
12 “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, ※ for the servant ※ does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. 17 These things I command you, so that you will love one another.
SATURDAY IV OF Easter
Saint Matthews Apostolic. (K)
Dear People of God,
Jesus said to his disciples: “Abide in my love, as I have abided in the Father’s love; and keep my commandments as I have kept the commandments of my Father, which is love.” Jesus set a good example, and invited his disciples to imitate him and become like him. It is always faithful to God the Father, and obeying the Father’s command:
. Sacrificing one’s own life to love others;
. Knowing how to get rid of my selfish ego to bring love to humanity;
. Abide in God’s love, let him give you strength;
. Becoming One with Him as Jesus was with God the Father as one. It is that union that gives the strength to conquer satan, to win back the love of souls. And in order to be happy with God the Father, the disciples should follow the example of Jesus Christ who obeyed God the Father in order to live.
God Himself, He chose and called His disciples to follow Him. God chooses whomever God wants, and God gives the vocation differently to each person. When someone has been chosen by God who will send him to bear much fruits which are souls; but in order to bear much fruits, be conformed to the likeness of Christ. It is sacrificing his own life to save souls, just as Christ himself died, hung on the cross, to take on all the sins of man.
And now, in order to bring love to souls, the disciples chosen by God are called to walk in the path of sacrifice and love as did Jesus Christ. That is the way to take up your cross and follow Jesus Christ.
Thanks be to God. Amen.