Acts 11:19-26 Reflection:
In the first reading today we are told something of how the early church began to settle down and spread out among the people.
After the persecution following the death of Stephen, the followers of Jesus fled and began to preach to Jews in outlying parts of the empire. Some preached to the gentiles and when the church in Jerusalem heard this they sent Barnabas to see what was going on.
Eventually Barnabas met Paul in Tarsus, which was Paul's birthplace. They spent a year there building up the church. We often get the idea that the Apostles just went and preached the word and moved on. That was not what they did.
They moved into an area and lived there for as long as it took to establish the new group on sound footing.
It is the same in our lives. We need to listen, read and study and stick close to a parish group by attending Mass etc if we are to grow in the faith. We do not hear the word of God once and move on. We need to get ourselves grounded in the faith, well grounded in sound Catholic teaching.
We need to do this if we are to make progress.