Thursday of the Third Week of Easter
Acts 8:26-40 + John 6:44-51
May 4, 2017
“‘How can I, unless someone instructs me?’”
The “marks of the Church” are four adjectives that describe the Church’s nature and mission: one, holy, catholic and apostolic. One of these is highlighted in today’s First Reading from Acts of the Apostles: the Church is “apostolic”.
The whole New Testament is apostolic: its books were written either by the apostles, or by their disciples from the apostles’ testimonies. The book of the New Testament that immediately follows the four accounts of the Gospel clearly highlights this mark of the Church since it is called Acts of the Apostles. From the Ascension of Jesus in Chapter 1, to the Descent of the Holy Spirit in Chapter 2, and throughout the book to its final chapter, the apostles—the Twelve—are highlighted.
Nonetheless, one of the aims of this book, as well as of the whole New Testament and the Church herself, is to move each Christian to recognize that he or she—in his or her own daily life—is called to be “apostolic” according to the vocation he or she has received. The word “apostle” literally means “one who is sent”. Each Christian is “one who is sent”. Where we are sent depends on our particular vocation, and the daily guidance of the Holy Spirit. Nonetheless, recognize that the Holy Spirit is calling you to live your baptismal promises in an “apostolic” way.