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Master·evangeli.net

Today's Gospel + short theological explanation

Friday 2nd in Ordinary Time

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Gospel text (Mk 3:13-19): Jesus went up the mountain and summoned those whom he wanted and they came to him. He appointed twelve [whom he also named apostles] that they might be with him and he might send them forth to preach and to have authority to drive out demons:[he appointed the twelve:] Simon, whom he named Peter; James, son of Zebedee, and John the brother of James, whom he named Boanerges, that is, sons of thunder; Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus; Thaddeus, Simon the Cananean, and Judas Iscariot who betrayed him.

Jesus calls and elects “the Twelve” (Apostles)

EDITORIAL TEAM evangeli.net (based on texts by Benedict XVI) (Città del Vaticano, Vatican)

Today, Jesus calls a group of close friends especially elected by Him to continue his mission and shape his “new family”. In the beginning the designation Apostles included more friends than this circle of “the Twelve”, but later it was strictly restricted to them.

Mark states that He “instituted Twelve”: “institute” is the Old Testament terminology to indicate the appointment of priests. Furthermore, the elected ones are appointed one by one, just as it had happened with the Israel prophets: the apostolic ministry appears as a fusion between the priestly mission and the prophetic mission. The previous events had taken place by the seaside; now Jesus climbs to the “mountain”, which points to the place of his communion with God: a place “in the heights”.

—The disciples’ election is a prayer event: they are “engendered” in prayer, in the familiarity with the Father. Thus, the call of the Twelve has a profound theological sense: their election is born out of the dialogue between the Son and the Father.