Yes, most kids were picking superheroes. I was picking apostles. St. John was it for me. One of the “Sons of Thunder” as Jesus called him and his brother James, John was always the one who was a little bit ambitious but also a little bit wise.
I wanted to be like John.
Today we understand that the writer of the Gospel of John and John the Apostle (and John the Diviner who wrote Revelation) are all different people. But the Gospel writer, and possibly the writer of Revelation, were so moved by John the Apostle’s character that they wrote under that name.
And that says something.
The Roman rite for this day has this prayer before Communion,
St. John proclaimed that your Word become flesh for our salvation. Through this Eucharist may your son always live in us, for he is Lord forever and ever.
John was said to be the only apostle of the original twelve to die of old age.
That’s important, I think. We have St. Stephen who died a tragic death juxtaposed with St. John who died a typical death.
Christmas, Christ’s advent into the world, came also for these days…those of the average person who lived and died in a way that is unremarkable and yet so enviable.
The Word became flesh and dwelt amongst all of us: the remarkable, the unremarkable, the tragic, the timid, the normal, and the abnormal.
All of us. For all of us. With all of us.
Questions for reflection: In what way can I honor the ordinariness of life today? Making dinner for someone, even a family member? Sitting down to dinner by myself after making it for myself? Calling a friend I talk to frequently to thank them for their continued friendship? Which apostle are you drawn most to (Remember: Mary Magdalene and Mary, the Mother of Jesus are also apostles)?