January 25, 2014

3rd Sunday - A


Great Light for People who Sit in Darkness

Jesus does not begin his ministry in Jerusalem, the center of Judaism, where devout Jews worship in the Temple.  

Instead, he goes first to the “land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali.”

Zebulun and Naphtali were the first two Israeli tribes that were conquered by the Assyrians.   Many of the people were forced into exile by their conquerors.  Their land and homes were then occupied by non-Jews.   By the time of Jesus, over 700 years later, the area has indeed become what Isaiah prophesized as “Galilee of the Gentiles” with at least half of the population were non-Jews.  [1]   

Truly, in fulfilling God’s plan, proclaimed by Isaiah, Jesus is the light for “the people who sit in darkness.”  He is the Savior who has come to bring life to “those dwelling in a land overshadowed by death.” 

[1] Raymond Brown, Ed.  The New Jerome Biblical Commentary, Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall; 1990, p. 638.

3rd Sunday - A (January 26, 2014)


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January 18, 2014

2nd Sunday - A


The Reason 

“The reason why I came baptizing with water was that he might be made known to Israel.”

John the Baptist clearly knows the purpose of his life and his ministry: to make the Son of God known.

That is the same purpose of the Church and every member of the Church. 

Do I always know that?  Do I lead my life with that same purpose?

2nd Sunday - A (January 19, 2014)


January 11, 2014

Baptism of the Lord - A


God’s Beloved Son

"This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased."

These words of God came at the beginning of Jesus’ public ministry.  The rest of the Gospel will portray for us God’s beloved Son. 

The first reading of this feast is a summary of how the beloved Son of God lived, with his attitudes and actions.  (And it would be better not for me to summarize or explain it)

“Thus says the LORD:
Here is my servant whom I uphold,
my chosen one with whom I am pleased,
upon whom I have put my spirit;
he shall bring forth justice to the nations,
not crying out, not shouting,
not making his voice heard in the street.
a bruised reed he shall not break,
and a smoldering wick he shall not quench,
until he establishes justice on the earth;
the coastlands will wait for his teaching.

I, the LORD, have called you for the victory of justice,
I have grasped you by the hand;
I formed you, and set you
as a covenant of the people,
a light for the nations,
to open the eyes of the blind,
to bring out prisoners from confinement,
and from the dungeon, those who live in darkness.”  (Isaiah 42: 1-4, 6-7)

How am I, a child of God, following the example of Jesus, God’s beloved Son?

Baptism of the Lord - A (January 12, 2014)


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January 4, 2014


Matthew 2: 1 – 12

What and Who Point Us to the “King of the Jews”

From this Gospel passage, we can list the people and things that help the magi in their search for the Savior:

1. “We saw his star … and have come…”:  the magi’s longing for God, their studies and search

2. The star: things in nature and creation that point us to God

3. King Herod, and the chief priests and the scribes of the people, and those the magi encounter in Jerusalem: other people, including those who oppose or find the Messiah/God a threat, and those who do not believe in God.

4. Scriptures

5. Conversation with others, including fellow searchers (the other magi) and others who help us and walk with us to Jesus

6. Mary and Joseph (though Joseph is not mentioned explicitly in this passage, we can presume that he’s there): Mary and the holy people who lead us to God

7: A Dream: direct signs from God, both natural and supernatural ones

In my life, who and what lead me to God?
And do I allow God to use me to lead others to God?

Epiphany - A (January 5, 2014)


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