We all know that St. Peter was given the keys to heaven as Jesus Christ’s vicar on earth, the first pope. And St. Paul himself was simply referred to as “The Apostle” in all of St. Thomas Aquinas’ writings and that of many other great Catholic theologians, even though we have the twelve other apostles to worry about! Such veneration of these great apostles was manifest very early on in the life of the Church, and their prayers constantly asked for as evidenced by the discovery of catacombs near the basilica of St. Sebastian’s in Rome.

How is it that after nearly two thousand years, two mere men still continue to be venerated in such a way? The only reason is that they reflected Christ in a powerful way, and that is something each and every one of us needs to strive for. When I reflect on their title as “Luminaries of the Church”, I think of how both of these apostles were responsible for bringing the gospel to every corner of the earth, meaning that the sun constantly shines on the Church of Christ wherever you are in the world. Whether it’s Australia, Sweden, or the United States, the one sacrifice of Jesus in the Mass occurs every day no matter what part of the globe the sun is illuminating. This is because both of these illustrious apostles followed our Lord’s model of “spiritual multiplication”.

Read more