Sunday, June 29, 2008
Happy birthday, St. Paul!
We never get to read about it in the Acts of the Apostles, but I wonder what Saul of Tarsus was thinking about the day he got up and headed for Damascus. Certainly he didn't realize that his life was going to turn 180 degrees in just a few short days. He had some Christian killin' to do. But it is through Paul that we cannot deny the fact of Jesus. Please don't take this statement as short-changing the original 11 disciples, but what did it profit Saul to change his story and begin preaching the Good News?
Without Paul, the charge could always be levied against our faith that the original disciples had embellished the story. No doubt our Lord knew this too. Apart from picking a judge or priest from the Sanhedrin, he chose one of the most zealous individuals opposed to the new Jesus sect that he could find. Bold move for sure. And fortunately for us, Paul went with it! Girded with the sword of truth, he was a one-man legion marching throughout the empire. His letters, which make up the lion's share of our New Testament, provide us with the earliest glimpses of our Church. And today, many of our Cathedrals, Basilicas, and parish churches bear his name... OH! And a little town in Minnesota!
St. Paul, pray for us!