Feast of St. Matthew!

Matthew 9:9

As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax office; and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he rose and followed him.

Not many children greet the day saying, “When I grow up, I want to do accounting!”  Seldom do we, in our deepest dreams and hopes of youth, say, “If only I could spend my life in an office!”  And when we lay on our deathbeds, we will not look back and say, “If only I had done more bookkeeping!”  Matthew must have felt the same way, judging from the way he nearly tipped his tableful of shekels over in his hurry to bolt from his cubicled existence to follow Jesus when he said, “Follow me.”  Matthew wanted life, not security (or securities).  And he got it.  He learned his lesson the hard way that money is cold comfort.  When the fire of God’s love was kindled, he felt it and drew near instantly.

Mark Shea


Mark P. Shea is a popular Catholic writer and speaker. The author of numerous books, his most recent work is The Work of Mercy (Servant) and The Heart of Catholic Prayer (Our Sunday Visitor). Mark contributes numerous articles to many magazines, including his popular column “Connecting the Dots” for the National Catholic Register. Mark is known nationally for his one minute “Words of Encouragement” on Catholic radio. He also maintains the Catholic and Enjoying It blog and regularly blogs for National Catholic Register. He lives in Washington state with his wife, Janet, and their four sons.

Subscribe to CE
(It's free)

Go to Catholic Exchange homepage

  • Not to mention, tax collectors were nigh-universally regarded as extortionists — because, in the Roman Empire, that’s how most of them operated.

  • mary8th

    Well, geez. I’m an accountant and Matthew is one of my login names since he is the paton saint of accountants. I love my chosen profession and feel God gave this to me. I pray (almost) every day that I will represent Jesus in my work and in the relationships I have at work. I doubt that on my death bed I will wish I had done more bookkeeping just as a laborer won’t wish he would have dug one more hole. So what?