November 30, 2022
by Rev. Richard Gabuzda
The Institute for Priestly Formation
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Feast of Saint Andrew, Apostle
Lectionary: 684

Romans 10:9-18
Psalm 19:8, 9, 10, 11
Matthew 4:18-22

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Faith Comes from What is Heard

Although the Feast of the Apostle Andrew seems to break abruptly into our first week of Advent, even today we hear today a bit of Scripture that puts us in mind of the season: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring the good news!” And in commenting on that familiar line, St. Paul adds: “Faith comes from what is heard.”

In the context of today’s feast, St. Paul helps us picture Andrew and the other apostles having been sent to proclaim the good news of Jesus to the world of their time. Without forgetting that the love expressed by the earliest believers disposed many hearts to believe, the actual preaching, proclaiming of the gospel, of the good news, planted seeds of faith in the hearts of many.
I’m sure many of us have read a passage of scripture in prayer or heard someone preaching and experienced what we might have called a “resting in the heart.” Perhaps we would describe it as “being struck,” or being convicted or being moved. In all these and other similar experiences, it is the power of the word at work, that is, the Holy Spirit who helps us hear the word and, as a result, brings us to greater faith.

But have we ever considered how, in less formal ways, our words might be vehicles of the Holy Spirit for growing faith in others?? A parent teaching a child to pray, a word of encouragement spoken to a co-worker that infuses faith into a difficult situation, a word of correction gently given, showing someone a new and better way to speak or act—are not all these situations at least potentially times when faith can be grown in others?

Perhaps in our prayer today we might ask the Lord to help us be more mindful of times and circumstances when we have or might be able to help others grow in faith by what we say and by what they hear.

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