Thursday 10 April 2014

Saint Matthias, Apostle - Feast

There are certain things that we do in church which require a certain amount of authority. For example, a church organisation such as the Liturgical Committee or RCIA team ought to have a chairperson or leader, so that the organisation would be properly represented in the church structure. If there are any matters concerning a particular organisation, the leader or chairperson would be informed, so that other members could also be informed.

This idea of proper authority and structure was also evident in ancient times. In today's reading, we see how the apostles eventually appointed Matthias to replace Judas Iscariot: "We must therefore choose someone who has been with us the whole time that the Lord Jesus was travelling round with us, someone who was with us right from the time when John was baptising until the day when he was taken up from us – and he can act with us as a witness to his resurrection."

Being an authority in church is certainly not easy, as one is called and chosen to be even more zealous in proclaiming the Good News. Notice here that one is not an authority through self-appointment. There is a danger that when a person is self-appointed, that person could be doing so for personal glory, personal gain, or personal gratification (syiok sendiri, as what some would say in Bahasa Malaysia).

In today's reading, we see how a person is chosen to a position of authority. In the reading: "Having nominated two candidates, Joseph known as Barsabbas, whose surname was Justus, and Matthias, they prayed, ‘Lord, you can read everyone’s heart; show us therefore which of these two you have chosen to take over this ministry and apostolate, which Judas abandoned to go to his proper place.’ They then drew lots for them, and as the lot fell to Matthias, he was listed as one of the twelve apostles."

Notice here in the reading:
  1. There is nomination: The candidates are nominated, not self-appointed.
  2. There is prayer: Prayer is necessary so that a wise decision is made
  3. There is drawing of lots: voting or undi is performed. We hope and pray that this is done fairly and after proper discernment, and not because the candidate is a friend or advantageous to certain persons.
  4. There is listing or acceptance: The person who has received the most number of votes fairly is then listed as the person of authority.
Thus, let us be mindful of how we choose persons to positions of authority. Let us properly discern and seek God's help, so that those who are truly worthy to be in positions of authority are appointed. Such persons are appointed not to please others or for personal gain, but for the greater glory of God. May those among us chosen to be in positions of authority be continuously and consistently tireless in serving all and building God's Kingdom.

No comments:

Post a Comment