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Who Is Your Spiritual Bestie?

Feast of Saints Simon & Jude, Apostles 

First Reading: Ephesians 2:19-22

Brothers and sisters:
You are no longer strangers and sojourners,
but you are fellow citizens with the holy ones
and members of the household of God,
built upon the foundation of the Apostles and prophets,
with Christ Jesus himself as the capstone.
Through him the whole structure is held together
and grows into a temple sacred in the Lord;
in him you also are being built together
into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.

Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 19:2-3, 4-5

R. (5a) Their message goes out through all the earth.
The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.
Day pours out the word to day,
and night to night imparts knowledge.
R. Their message goes out through all the earth.
Not a word nor a discourse
whose voice is not heard;
Through all the earth their voice resounds,
and to the ends of the world, their message.
R. Their message goes out through all the earth.

Gospel: Luke 6:12-16

Jesus went up to the mountain to pray,
and he spent the night in prayer to God.
When day came, he called his disciples to himself,
and from them he chose Twelve, whom he also named Apostles:
Simon, whom he named Peter, and his brother Andrew,
James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew,
Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus,
Simon who was called a Zealot,
and Judas the son of James,
and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.

NAB

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Do you have a spiritual bestie to walk alongside you and do life together?

I think some of the greatest blessings in life are those friends and companions who can support and challenge you in the spiritual life.

I recently was able to grab coffee with such a friend in my life who was back in town for the weekend. Drenched in lattes and laughing together in cozy armchairs, we shared with each other what God is up to in each of our lives. We talked about struggles, hopes, and dreams. We talked about what God is working in ministries we serve in and favorite books or podcasts we’ve been loving. As I recall that wonderful Saturday morning, I find myself wondering if Saints Simon and Jude shared such a friendship with each other.

It is commonly thought that they share the same feast day because both men had been sent to preach the Gospel: Simon in Egypt, Jude in Mesopotamia and finally together in Persia. But we don’t know for certain a lot about them beyond them being identified as Apostles in the New Testament. Besides sharing the same feast day, did these men who were both in Jesus’ “Band of Brothers” find a close spiritual companion in the other? Did they pray together? Could they trust each other with their deeper feelings or emotions? How did they challenge and support each other spiritually after Jesus’ Ascension to Heaven? How did they support each other taking the Gospel message to a foreign land? These are questions we cannot for sure answer, but it is interesting to think about what the dynamic would have been between the two of them.

We cannot be Christian lone-rangers, riding off into the sunset. We need each other. We cannot live the Christian life alone or in isolation, if we try we will wither up and die. In his homily on the Occasion of the Day of Confraternities in 2013, Pope Francis challenged the faithful to “be an active presence in the community, as living cells, as living stones.” We need spiritual companions and friends to walk with us on the road of Christian discipleship. We need men and women who will love us, cheer us on, and challenge us when we need it. We need to be living stones in the lives of other people. And we need to have our own Saints Simon and Jude in our lives.

Who are the cherished spiritual companions in your life, your own Saints Simon and Jude? Write a note, send a text, or call that person today. Share with them how they are helping you more fully become who God wants you to be.

Patty Hubbard is a runner, youth minister ordinaire, and thinks old movies are the greatest thing since sliced bread.  When not fundraising for World Youth Day, she is learning to find grace in all things. You can find out more about her here.

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