THURSDAY 14TH MAY 2020
FEAST OF ST MATTHIAS
ACTS 1:15-17,20-26, JOHN 15:9-17
Have you ever been in a situation where you are to choose between two things in front of you and you are confused even after seeking advice from others, because the two look alike? How did you solve it? Some just close their eyes and choose one, some may call a child to choose for them with the belief that God will work through an innocent child. In our various cultures, we have different ways of casting lots to decide which to choose among others. The Jews also cast lots as we see when the soldiers who killed Jesus cast lot to know who is to have his cloak; and though they see it as luck, they also regard it an act of God. If the lot falls on you, it is both a luck and a divine intervention.
We would recall that Jesus had 12 Apostles, but when Judas betrayed Jesus and thereafter killed himself, the other Apostles, following the words of psalm 109:8, decided to replace him with someone else. It is therefore not surprising that the choosing of Matthias as an Apostle was by lot according to Jewish practice. Nevertheless, it is very important to note that, the choosing of Matthias was not just by lot but also by the intervention of God. This is because before the lot was cast between Joseph and Matthias, the Apostles had prayed and invoked the Holy Spirit to intervene. Matthias therefore is not to see his becoming an Apostle as a matter of mere luck but a divine call.
In our day to day life, we encounter different situations where we succeed where others fail. We compete with other people and we come out victorious not because we are better than them, but because God is involved. We should never take such things for granted. Whatever we achieve is not by our own power or mere luck, God is always involved. We are therefore not to pride ourselves around others thinking that we have been chosen because we are better than them.
Matthias was not a direct Apostle of Jesus, but Jesus chose him after his resurrection to replace Judas who had abandoned his duty post for love of money. This work Matthias carried out with the whole of his life until he died a martyr's death. He is the patron saint of tailors, carpenters and reformed alcoholics. He is also invoked against small pox. Let us ask for his intercession today even against this Covid-19 pandemic. God help us.
St Matthias; pray for us.
Fr Michael Osatofoh Eninlejie MSP