A Reader Writes for Sunday 23 January
Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C
1st Reading; NEHEMIAH Chapter 8; Verses 2-6, 8-10
In this reading Esdras was reading the law which was later perverted by the Pharisees – in a lengthy reading he was telling the people that there is only one law to serve the Lord.
Yes, we rejoice at the law of Jesus, but note how the law can be perverted and abused. Just as we have today with so many laws, State control and manipulation.
We need to know God’s law, not necessarily the details of it, just the love and the results which bring to us his people. So yes, celebrate the truth- we deserve it by that knowledge.
Edras reiterates that their very beings, strengthened by the knowledge of God, should dry tears from their eyes and that they should celebrate with wine and food and rejoice, as should we, that his truth is revealed to us.
2nd Reading; CORINTHIANS Chapter 12; Verses 12-30
St Paul, somewhat at great length, sets out the human take on the Body. Our physical body, made up of all that we see, in its entirety, all elements listed. He also points out that the body needs the major and the minor of the elements to indeed be whole and to function efficiently.
He then, with great skill, concentrates our minds, through our known faith and knowledge of teachings, and in so doing, he reminds us of the wonder of Christ’s body comprising , not of what we know above, but of Members of the same body, his heavenly body. In this body if one man suffers , all suffer, if one man is rejected, all are rejected. We are one in membership of this body. We join the Church, the Prophets, the Apostles; the truth of the oneness of all that makes up this Heavenly vessel, listening to the word by means of divine tongues.
Gospel; ST LUKE Chapter 1; Verses 1-4 and Chapter 4; 14-21
In this Gospel St Luke precedes the fundamental truth of Our Lord’s mission and our own faith with a passage to correct possible inaccuracies of recollection from others who have witnessed the goings on in the Lord’s early life on earth. He then presents them to Theophilus and to those in the Synagogue and directly to us.
So – he lists the events where Jesus went to Galilee, news of which abounded around the district. Then to Nazareth where he found himself in the Synagogue. There Our Lord preached, and whilst preaching he was handed a scroll which he unrolled and proceeded to read out loud. He spoke of being anointed by God, and the bringer of glad tidings to the World, to the Poor, liberty to Captives and sight to the Blind and freedom to the Oppressed. In other words – his mission on earth
This passage is cleverly inserted into the Gospel, because, from the Lord’s own mouth, comes the meaning of it all, the basis of our faith in him and the reasons for our belief. We are left in no doubt, as were those in the Synagogue; the way to the Father is through “Me”.
Homily and Reflections
Please click on the link below to view this week’s Homily and Deacon’s Reflections.