Come and See!

August 24, 2017
Feast of Saint Bartholomew, Apostle
The Gospel Today
John 1:45-51

Philip found Nathanael and told him,
“We have found the one about whom Moses wrote in the law,
and also the prophets, Jesus son of Joseph, from Nazareth.”
But Nathanael said to him,
“Can anything good come from Nazareth?”
Philip said to him, “Come and see.”
Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said of him,
“Here is a true child of Israel.
There is no duplicity in him.”
Nathanael said to him, “How do you know me?”
Jesus answered and said to him,
“Before Philip called you, I saw you under the fig tree.”
Nathanael answered him,
“Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel.”
Jesus answered and said to him,
“Do you believe
because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree?
You will see greater things than this.”
And he said to him, “Amen, amen, I say to you,
you will see heaven opened and the angels of God
ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”

REFLECTION (Sem. Peter Collin C. Crisostomo)

Today we celebrate the Feast of St. Bartholomew, who we also associate with the name Nathanael. In the Gospel, Philip came to him proclaiming that he had seen the Lord but his reply was, “Can anything good come from Nazareth?” “Come and see” was the answer of Philip.

It’s my second year now in the seminary and this phrase stated by Philip to Nathanael still resonates with me. I remember, during our Live-in Vocation Seminar before I entered the seminary, this was the theme of the program. Even though the phrase ‘come and see’ appears many times in the Gospel, it is always an invitation of coming and dwelling into Christ. It’s a sign of following Him who is calling.

Each day I wake up is an invitation of coming and seeing Jesus. It requires an everyday response to his call. Like what Nathanael did in the Gospel, at first he asked, but then he still followed, and we know what happened to him in the end; due to his ardent faith, he was flayed alive.

Following God’s call is not an easy response. It is an experience of persecution, martyrdom and yet the reward is priceless, Jesus himself. To attain happiness, one needs to desire to become a saint. Those who do not aspire to be a saint experience real sadness.

Let this be an inspiration to each of us; like Nathanael, let us not be afraid to follow God’s call. It’s never too late to heed the call.

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