St. Matthew was a tax collector in the city of Capernaum, where Jesus lived. He was a Jew who worked for the Romans. For this reason, his countrymen disliked him. They called him a “public sinner,” as they felt he was betraying his own people.
But Jesus did not feel that way about Matthew. One day, Jesus saw Matthew sitting in his office and he said, “Follow me.” At once, Matthew left his money and his position to follow Jesus.
Jesus seemed so holy and king-like that Matthew gave a big supper for Jesus. He invited other friends to meet Jesus and listen to him teach.
Some people found fault with Jesus for sharing a meal with those whom they considered sinners. However, Jesus had a ready answer. “They who are well do not need a doctor; the sick do. I have not come to call the just, but sinners to repentance.”
When Jesus went back to heaven, St. Matthew stayed in Palestine. He remained there for some time to preach about the Lord.
We are familiar with the Gospel of Matthew, which is the story of Jesus and what he taught. St. Matthew presents Jesus to his own people. The Lord is the Messiah whom the prophets had said would come to save us.
After preaching the Gospel to many people, St. Matthew finally gave his life as a glorious martyr for the faith.
Reflection: Jesus came to seek for the lost sheep. He looked for him and when found He will never let it go from His flock. Let us be found by Jesus, the Good Shepherd. Let our sin never hinder us from not being found by our Blessed Lord. Let us be humble before Him like St. Matthew did. And when found, let us sin no more.
Prayer: O God, who with untold mercy were pleased to choose as an Apostle Saint Matthew, the tax collector, grant that, sustained by his example and intercession, we may merit to hold firm in following you. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.