The second reason that St. Luke's Day is so important to me is because of the apostle's unique work as the only evangelist who provides detailed information of the events following the Ascension of Our Lord. Like the other Gospels, St. Luke's ends shortly after Jesus returns to the right hand of the Father. However, Luke does not leave us wondering about the futureof the Church. He follows the Disciples as they become the Apostles and embark on the difficult task of "preaching repentance and the remission of sins" (Luke 24:47.)
This is important to us as Christians, because we struggle even today with the means and manner in which we might spread the Gospel Message. We are told in the Gospel of Matthew, for example, to "go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations" (Matt 28:19.) The question becomes, how do we make disciples? By what example can we follow? Surely, our first step is to tread in the footprints of Christ, but what does that look like?
Luke, in his wisdom, provides us with the story of Christ's ministry in his Gospel, then gives us the human response in the Acts of the Apostles. By extending the story beyond the Ascension, he gives us a peak, a brief glance into the hearts and minds of the early church. We have, in Luke's complete opus, we have not only God's greatest Salvific act, but also the response of those who witnessed that act. In short, we have the earliest possible answers to basic questions of the Faith: what makes us Christian? What laws are eternal? Are laws more primary than Love? As Christians we will struggle with these questions until we enter the New Kingdom. St. Luke, however, gives us a starting point; a foundatin to build upon. He doesn't present every possible situation, nor does he answer every question, but rather, he provides the framework for addressing all situations that may arise.
For the Life and Work of S. Luke, we give Glory to God and great thanks, and we ask that through the example of the early church, provided by Luke's written words, might guide us in seeking to grow the Church while remaining rooted in its source; even Jesus Christ, our friend and Guide.