The disciples choose a replacement for Judas
Jesus told his disciples not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait in the city for "the promise of the Father about which you heard me speak; for John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit. You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and to the ends of the earth." And then, while the disciples were watching, Jesus disappeared into a cloud and was gone.
As they reflected on the miraculous sight that had just happened in front of them, the disciples went back into the city of Jerusalem to the upper room where they found Peter, John, James, Andrew and many other Christians. Even Mary, the mother of Jesus, and some other women were there. They spent many hours praying and studying the Scriptures together.
At one of their times together, there were more than 120 people present. Peter stood up to speak to them. "My brothers," he said, "the Scripture had to be fulfilled which the Holy Spirit spoke beforehand through the mouth of David, concerning Judas, who was the guide for those who arrested Jesus. He was numbered among us and was allotted a share in this ministry."
Peter reminded the Christians that Judas returned the 30 pieces of silver he had been paid to betray Jesus. However, the scribes and Pharisees who paid him did not want to put the money back into the church treasury, so they bought some land from a potter with it. This land has become known as the “Field of Blood," because it was bought with money that was paid for the death of someone.
Peter continued quoting from the Scriptures. "Let his encampment become desolate, and may no one dwell in it, and may another take his office." The disciples and the people who were with them decided to replace the position of the first 12 disciples that had been filled by Judas with another man. Two candidates were proposed, Barsabbas and Matthias.
The Christians also agreed that the best method of selection to use would be the casting of lots. Peter said a prayer before the lots were cast. "You, Lord, who know the hearts of all, show which one of these two you have chosen to take the place in this apostolic ministry from which Judas turned away to go to his own place." The lot fell upon Matthias.
READ MORE ABOUT IT:
1. What happened to the money paid to Judas?
2. What important woman was with the disciples?
Vincent of Lerins had earned such a reputation as an educated man that St. Eucherius described him as being "pre-eminent in eloquence and learning." He may have served in the French army before he joined the abbey of Lerins, near Cannes. In his position as a priest and a monk, he spent many hours studying and writing a book against heresies that became known as the Commonitorium. He wanted a written guide he could refer to, so that he would be able to identify Christian truth against lies or misinterpretation. Not everyone agreed with what he wrote, but religious scholars still study his theories today. We honor him on May 24.