Memorial of St Barnabas

Memorial of St Barnabas


Acts 11:21-26, 13:1-3, Mt. 5:13-16. Today the Church celebrates the memorial of St Barnabas, one of the close collaborators of Paul, whose commitment and dedication to the Lord earned him the name Barnabas. He was admired for his gift of animating others. His given name was Josef, but Barnabas was added as a nickname which means “son of encouragement.” Barnabas was one of the most amiable and life-promoting of the early Christians. The author of today’s first reading refers to him as “a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith.” A trusted confidant of many, he shared much of his property with the poor and it was he who helped Paul gain entry to the Christian community in Jerusalem. As portrayed in Acts, Barnabas had the sort of unselfish, encouraging personality that made him a great ambassador for the Gospel. He was the perfect delegate to be sent by the Apostles to support the growing Church in Antioch.

Today’s Gospel reports Jesus’ guidance to His twelve Apostles, with the urgency and goodwill that their mission required. They were to be zealous with the message and in the ministry of healing and practice a sober, purposeful lifestyle, unconcerned for the trappings of wealth and status. Today’s memorial reminds us to imbibe the qualities in Barnabas which gave such a boost to the growth of the Church in his time. With pastors like him, our Church could have a great revival. God is always at work in new and creative ways among us and it is a great gift to be able to recognise Divine inspiration wherever it is to be found, and to encourage its effects. When Barnabas was sent to Antioch by the Apostles to assess what was happening there, he immediately recognised it as the work of the Lord and sided with this new development. We need to be open to the Spirit, in order to recognise the work of the Spirit to be able to function effectively.

May the Lord be with us at every moments of our lives and strengthen us in His grace, so that we may continue to be source of encouragement to others! Amen!! Have a glorious day!!!




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