Thursday, 26 January 2017 : 3rd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Timothy and St. Titus, Bishops (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we celebrate the feast day of two of St. Paul’s followers and fellow leaders of the early Church, St. Timothy and St. Titus, who accompanied him during certain parts of his apostolic journeys, and with whom he kept correspondences, which are then compiled and become part of the New Testament of our Sacred Scriptures today.

These two were among those whom the Apostles had appointed as the episcopi, overseers or bishops among the people of God. They have been chosen to help in the works of the Apostles, and to be their successors to continue the works that the Apostles had started. From them too, came forth many more successors and bishops, who followed on through time, as those who have given themselves to the service of the Gospel for the sake of mankind’s salvation.

And in the Gospel, Jesus our Lord also appointed seventy-two disciples in addition to the twelve Apostles He had chosen. The seventy-two disciples are those whom God had chosen to assist in the good works which the Lord had appointed them to do. They had been instructed by the Lord to go to every places He was to go, to prepare His way for him, and to bring the Good News to the people in those places.

All of us Christians have also been called to do the same, as Jesus Himself had aptly said, that while the harvest is plentiful, but the labourers are few. The harvest refers to the richness of opportunities in this world for evangelisation and conversion, of many people who have yet to receive the Good News of God, and the many people who are still living in sin and darkness, in the ignorance of the light of Christ.

The labourers of the harvest are all those whom God have called to help gather His harvest, namely those who have answered His call and accepted their new role as the devoted servants of God. They are our priests and bishops, those in the holy orders and religious life, who have given themselves and their whole lives for service to God, in the same manner as St. Timothy and St. Titus, and many other holy saints had been.

There are many things that these servants of God had to do, preaching the Good News, healing the sick and caring for them, as well as for all those who are without hope, downtrodden and rejected by the society. And they will also be accepted in places, but rejected in even more places. There will be many of those who refuse to listen to them, and instead of obeying their precepts, continued to live their old and sinful way of life.

In all of this, we should look upon the examples of St. Timothy, St. Titus and all the holy saints who have devoted their life to God. They went from places to places, ministering for the people who need them, both in physical and also spiritual, but more importantly, they provided for them the sustenance of their faith, showing them examples of how they ought to live their lives in good faith.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, we are all called to serve the Lord in our different capacities and opportunities, that as Christians and thus members of the Church, we may be true bearers of the message of God’s Holy Gospels, and awaken in many others, the faith that have laid dormant in their hearts. Let us all inspire one another, and help guide each other on our journey of faith towards the Lord.

May the Lord bless us all, and awaken in us the desire to serve Him, so that some amongst us may be stirred when He calls us, to be His servants, to take up the cross and follow Him, and support and continue the good works of the Apostles and disciples, and their successors. May the Lord help us all and be with us always. Amen.

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