By Christina Hermoso
Roman Catholics will commemorate tomorrow, September 21, the Feast of Saint Matthew (San Mateo), one of the twelve apostles of Jesus Christ, and one of the four evangelists.
Also known as Levi, St. Matthew was a Galilean who worked as a tax collector for the Romans. According to the Scriptures, Jesus called him “while he was sitting in the custom house. He left everything and followed Jesus and tendered Him a feast in his house where tax collectors and sinners sat at the table with Jesus and His disciples.”
When Jesus overheard the remarks of the Pharisees, He remarked, “Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do. I did not come to call the righteous but sinners” (Matthew 9:13).
St. Matthew witnessed several important events in the life of Jesus Christ such as His Passion, Resurrection, and Ascension. While he was in Judea, he wrote what was considered as the most complete and accurate account of the Holy Gospel. According to tradition, he preached the Gospel among the Hebrews for 15 years, before proceeding to the East where he suffered martyrdom for his faith.
In art, St. Matthew is symbolized by a man because he began his Gospel with Jesus’ human genealogy.