On this fifth day of the Octave of prayer for Christian Unity we in Canterbury are praying especially for Barton Church led by Oz Power, Canterbury Vineyard Church led by Jim and Koreans Denison and the people of the parish of St Nicholas, Thannington Without, and the church warden Caroline Mettham.
In today’s Gospel (Mark 3: 13-19) Jesus went into the hills and summoned those he wanted to be with him. Some translations refer to Jesus going onto a mountain. Mountains were places were significant events took place. Mount Tabor and Mount Horeb are examples. We have no idea where this mountain was but from among those who were with him Jesus chose twelve. They to be his companions and they were to be sent out to preach, to proclaim the message.and we’re given power to drive out demons. We know there were not the creme de la creme but very ordinary men. Peter, a fisherman who drew his sword on a man a cut off his ear, James and John were known as sons of thunder, possibly because of their fiery characters.
There was Thomas who was stubborn and sceptical. Simon who was a Zealot. The zealots were an armed group intent on driving out the Roman occupiers. Jesus called Matthew who as a tax collector and collaborated with the Romans. Despite these differences, with Jesus, they worked and lived together. Jesus saw in them their true potential and how they would become be affective apostles.
This is an encouragement to us. He has called us, summoned us also to be his companions. He sees beyond our short comings, our faults and failings so that we can become effective apostles.