MEDITATION OF THE DAY
Like a Net Cast into the Sea
By the fact that Christ our Lord created the sky, earth, sea, and the great, many, and varied creatures in them, he gave wonderful evidence of his power. By the fact that he assumes human nature, acts the part of man, enters into the centuries, passes through the periods of life, teaches by word, works cures by his power, tells parables, gives examples, and manifests in himself the burden of our emotions—by all this he reveals that he has an indescribable affection of human love….
The Kingdom of heaven is like a net cast into the sea. This parable reveals why Christ chose fishermen to be his Apostles, and changed catchers of fish into fishers of men, that fishermen’s practice might be recognized as a type of God’s judgement…. Christ sent his fishermen—Peter, Andrew, James, and John, all of them approved for their skill—to the sea of this world. It was a sea swelling with its vain display, proud of its confusion, stormy because of factions, fluctuating through uncertainty, noisy with grievances, roaring with anger, shipwrecked by sins, and sunk into impiety. Come, follow me, he told them, and I will make you fishers of men.
Hence, he sent his fishers forth with nets woven of the precepts of the Law and of the Gospel, hemmed with counsels, expanded with gifts of virtues and with grace, fit to gather an unceasing catch into the shelter of the Gospel. Now, brethren, right now is the time of this catch. Christ’s nets are being drawn through the tribes and nations now. Throughout the whole world they are bringing in teeming catches, without discrimination of persons.
Saint Peter Chrysologus
Saint Peter Chrysologus († 450), Doctor of the Church, was Archbishop of Ravenna, Italy. [From Saint Peter Chrysologus: Selected Sermons and Saint Valerian Homilies, The Fathers of the Church, Volume 17, George E. Ganss, s.j., Tr. © 1953, The Catholic University of America Press, Washington, D.C. Used with permission.]