It is 24th August 2018. We celebrate the Feast of St Bartholomew the Apostle. He is one of the twelve apostles otherwise named as Nathaniel (John 1:45-51, and 21:2) in whom there is no guile and was open to the truth that Jesus is the Christ. There was no duplicity in him. He was a close friend of St. Philip, who introduced him to Jesus. After having received the Holy Spirit, he set out to Asia Minor, north western India, and Greater Armenia. He is the patron saint of bookbinders; butchers; cobblers; cheese merchants; salt merchants; leather workers; nervous diseases; and neurological diseases. He died as a martyr in Armenia. The readings are from Revelations 21:9-14; and the Gospel John 1:45-51. Openness is the key to knowing and encountering truth. People who search for the truth, always go an extra mile looking for it. It is the willingness to accept the truth as it is without exaggerating or undermining it. Our openness to the reality and the truth can be widened by the humility we have in knowing a person, a fact and an environment. Once we have encountered the truth and assimilated it in our lives, we go beyond our comfort zones. As we celebrate the feast day for an apostle who was least known in the Scripture except the encounter with Jesus under a fig tree, a symbol of peace and prosperity. The first reading offers the due credit for an apostle and hails them as the foundation of the Church that Jesus himself built. The responsorial Psalm praises, “Your friends make known, O Lord, the glorious splendour of your kingdom.” (Ps.145:12). The Gospel presents us with the maiden encounter of St. Bartholomew with Jesus through the help of St. Philip. Jesus recognised him as a person without any cheating or pretentions. He was not only open to accept Jesus as the Son of God and declared his belief in Him to the others. How open are we to the truths that are taught by the Church? Are willingly to accept them or just ignore them and keep it for our time pass and discussions only? God through God’s Church teaches us and reveals us the truth to those like Nathaniel. Let us be imbibed by the spirit of openness and frankness towards the truth of St. Bartholomew. May the Lord bless us to embrace the truth in Jesus our Lord, and Saviour. May you have a good day. God bless you.

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