Deacon Jim Olson’s Homily – 11-30-20

Monday, November 30, 2020

     Saint Andrew was one of the fishermen of Bethsaida, and brother of Saint Peter, and became a disciple of Saint John the Baptist.  He seemed always eager to bring others into notice; when called himself by Christ on the banks of the Jordan, his first thought was to go in search of his brother, and he said, “We have found the Messiah,” and brought him to Jesus. It was he again who, when Christ wished to feed the five thousand in the desert, pointed out a lad with the five loaves and fishes. St Andrew went forth upon his mission to plant the faith in Scythia & Greece, and at the end of years of toil to win a martyr’s crown. 

     After suffering a cruel scourging at Patrae in Achaia, he was left, bound by cords, to die upon a cross. When Saint Andrew first caught sight of the gibbet on which he was to die, he greeted the precious wood with joy. “O good cross!” he cried, “made beautiful by the limbs of Christ, so long desired, now so happily found! Receive me into thy arms and present me to my master, that he who redeemed me through thee may now accept me from thee.”

     Two whole days the martyr remained hanging on this cross alive, preaching, without stretched arms from this chair of truth, to all who came near, and entreating them not to hinder his passion.

       As in the case of all the Apostles except Peter & John, the Gospels give us little about the Holiness of Andrew. He was an Apostle. That is enough. He was called personally by Jesus to proclaim the good news, to heal with Jesus’ power and to share Jesus’ life and death. Holiness today is no different.  It is a gift that includes a call for us to be concerned about the kingdom, an outgoing attitude that wants nothing more than to share the riches of Christ with all people.

Published by St. James, Belvidere

Saint James Catholic Church, Belvidere, IL