Feast of Saint Bartholomew, Apostle
Malvern Minute


Feast of Saint Bartholomew, Apostle

August 24, 2020

Deacon Anthony J. Cincotta

Assistant Director for Retreat Ministry


Book of Revelation 21:9b-14

Psalm 145:10-11, 12-13, 17-18

John 1:45-51


In today’s Gospel narrative we identify Nathanael as Bartholomew.  Nathanael was his first name, Bartholomaios, which means son of Talmai or Tholmai, is his last name.  He was friends with Philip and usually mentioned with Philip.  When Nathanael was brought into discipleship, Philip said that Jesus was from Nazareth.  Nathanael, rather rudely it seems to me, said that nothing good came from Nazareth.  Philip said that he must come and see for himself.  As our Lord see’s them coming, her recognized Nathanael’s character.  He said to him, in essence, you are a man who speaks with honesty and from the heart.  Apparently he was, since Bartholomew was impressed at Jesus’ recognition.  He said, how do you know me?  Jesus replied that he has seen him sitting under a fig tree before Philip brought him.  This must have also been true, because immediately Nathanael pledged himself to Jesus as the newest apostle.

As skeptical as he was a first, concerning Jesus’ origin, Bartholomew was adamant after meeting his Lord.  Jesus said, “Here is a true child of Israel.  There is no duplicity in him.”  This means that Bartholomew said what he thought and did not say one thing when he meant another.  He did not say things just to be polite.  He may have insulted Jesus (and all those from Nazareth,) practically to His face, but also when he realized who Jesus was, he acknowledged his error immediately and changed his attitude completely. 

Bartholomew was equally steadfast in his proclamation of the Gospel even unto his martyrdom.  Saint John Chrysostom declared that Saint Bartholomew brought the Gospel to the people of Lycaonia.   After converting the king of Armenia he was flayed alive.  Even unto his horrific death Saint Bartholomew would not lie in denouncing Jesus as the Son of God.   Not even to “save his own skin.”  Just as Nathanael was invited to meet Jesus we too much “come and see for ourselves.”

Question of the Day:  Can you be as true to yourself as was Saint Bartholomew?

Prayer:  Lord, strengthen in us that Faith by which Your Apostle Saint Bartholomew adhered to Your Son with sincerity of mind.  Through his intercession, grant that Your Church may become a sacrament of salvation for all nations.  Amen.  (From the Lives of the Saints – Illustrated.)

Please continue to pray for the victims of the coronavirus and for all who are affected by this unprecedented pandemic as well as for peace in our country and in our world.


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