Gospel: Mt 4: 18-22
As Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon who is called Peter, and his brother Andrew, casting a net into the sea; they were fishermen. He said to them, “Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men.” At once they left their nets and followed him. He walked along from there and saw two other brothers, James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John. They were in a boat, with their father Zebedee, mending their nets. He called them, and immediately they left their boat and their father and followed him.
COME AFTER ME: Andrew was originally a disciple of St. John the Baptist and later the same Andrew became the first of Jesus’ disciples (Jn 1:35-40). His name regularly appears in the Gospels near the top of the list of the Twelve. It was he who first introduced his brother Simon to Jesus (Jn 1:41-42). He was, in a real sense, the first home missionary, as well as the first foreign missionary (Jn 12:20-22). The name “Andrew” is a Greek name meaning “courageous” or “manly.” St. Andrew lived up to his name by suffering martyrdom. This story of the call of St. Andrew is quite appropriate for the beginning of Advent because Advent must be a time when Jesus calls us anew. It must be a new beginning and a new conversion for us. As Advent begins, we should hear Jesus call to us, “Come after Me!”
Prayer: Lord, let my words and deeds inspire others to come to you!
BRINGING PEOPLE TO JESUS: Andrew, whose feast we celebrate today, comes out in the gospels as an apostle who brings others to Jesus. To begin with, in the Gospel of John after his own encounter with Jesus, he goes and brings Simon, his brother, to Jesus (Jn 1: 40-42). When Jesus asked his disciples to feed the multitude, they replied they do not have enough money to buy bread for that crowd. However, Andrew found a young boy who had five barley loaves and two fish and brought the lad to Jesus (Jn 6:9). Again, when some Greeks wanted to have an encounter with Jesus, they approached one of the Greek speaking apostles, Philip. He approached Andrew, and Andrew brought them to Jesus (Jn 12:22). May he teach us and intercede for us the grace to be able to bring other people to Jesus.