Prayer of the Day
Sixth Week of Easter – Feast of St. Augustine of CanterburyMay 27th, 2014
Since Easter Sunday our first Reading at Mass has been taken from the Acts of the Apostles. This Book written by St. Luke tells how the Apostles, having received the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, went out from Jerusalem to proclaim the Gospel near and far. In to-day’s Reading we hear how Paul and Silas were miraculously freed from prison. Like Jesus himself these two evangelists had been cruelly flogged and then thrown in prison with very tight security. Late that night while Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns an earthquake shook the building and broke all the prisoners’ chains. When the gaoler realised what had happened, he recognised the hand of God and asked the disciples how he could be saved. Paul’s response was very direct. It had nothing to do with rules and regulations. It was centred entirely on a person – Jesus Christ. “Become a believer in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved and your household too.” Even though it was very late and they were still in prison the disciples introduced the gaoler and his family to the person of Jesus and that very night they were all baptised.
This story shows us the enthusiasm, joy and zeal which characterised those first disciples of Jesus. Even though they had been unjustly condemned, were flogged and imprisoned, they continued to praise the Lord and were delighted to have the opportunity to proclaim his Name. It was no doubt the Holy Spirit, living in them, who inspired them. May he also inspire us so that we too may be enthusiastic ministers of the Gospel in our homes and parishes.