On the weekend of Sept. 21/22, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Matthew. Saint Matthew, one of the twelve Apostles, is the author of the first Gospel. Before his conversion, he was a tax collector. His apostolic activity was at first restricted to the communities of Palestine. Nothing definite is known about his later life. There is a tradition that points to Ethiopia as his field of labor; other traditions mention Parthia and Persia. It is uncertain whether he died a natural death or received the crown of martyrdom. Saint Matthew’s Gospel was written to fill a sorely felt want for his fellow countrymen, both believers and unbelievers. For the former, it served as a token of his regard and as an encouragement in the trial to come, especially the danger of falling back to Judaism. For the latter, it was designed to convince them that the Messiah had come in the person of Jesus, our Lord, in Whom all the promises of the Messianic Kingdom had been fulfilled in a spiritual rather than in a carnal way.