January 27, 2013: 3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
Catholic Social Teaching: Solidarity
“We are one human family, whatever our national, racial, ethnic, economic and ideological differences…” Themes from Catholic Social Teaching USCCB
First Reading: Nehemiah 8:2-4a, 5-6, 8-10
Psalm: 19: 8, 9, 10, 15
Second Reading: 1st Corinthians 12:12-30
Gospel: Luke: 1:1-4; 4:14-21
Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church
Luke 4: 18-19
“…In the Gospel of Saint Luke, Jesus describes his messianic ministry with the words of Isaiah which recall the prophetic significance of the Jubilee…preach good news to the poor…proclaim release to the captives…recovering sight to the blind…set at liberty those who are oppressed…proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord…Jesus therefore places himself on the frontline of fulfillment, not only because he fulfills what was promised and what was awaited by Israel, but also in a deeper sense that in him the decisive event of the history of God with mankind is fulfilled…” paragraph 28
1st Corinthians 12:13
“God shows no partiality, since all people have the same dignity as creatures made in his image and likeness. The Incarnation of the Son of God shows the equality of all people with regard to dignity…for you are all on in Christ Jesus…Since something of the glory of God shines on the face of every person, the dignity of every person before God is the basis of the dignity of man before other men…” paragraph 144
We are the body of Christ, with many parts interdependently working together and have been handed the scroll to read. How easily we omit the words announce good tidings to the poor, liberty to the captives and let the oppressed go free. These words proclaim the law — the law of loving God and neighbor, by abandoning partiality and respecting human dignity. But like Jesus does our custom pause for the Sabbath, to let the word proclaimed be embedded in our heart to reach our lips and action during the week? If we do hear the word and know the commandments, are we like the rich young man of the Gospel that seeks to follow Jesus but cannot because material wealth, status and prestige fail to leave room in our hearts for the law of love? Yet this is a law that should not make us sad or weep, but celebrate in festive mode. For the words are Spirit and life in allowing everyone to belong, feel needed without division and share concern for one another in joy and challenges. A law showing no partiality, only enlightening our eye and refreshing our soul to clearly see the enduring, pure, simple wisdom. In your life, at your parish do you live in an environment with the exclusiveness of a country club or will you take to heart the words on the scroll? If you are feet in the body of Christ walk beside to assist someone, so they know glad tidings. If you are a mouth in the body of Christ, proclaim when you see injustice, so people are freed from the captivity of oppression. If you are an eye in the body of Christ, help those blinded by self-centeredness see God’s law of love for everyone as neighbor. If you are a hand in the body of Christ, release your grip from ways you demean others by your speech or consumer decisions, as a witness to others of your trustworthiness to the Lord’s decrees. All parts of the body of Christ, each with a unique gift, play a role in proclaiming a year acceptable to the Lord.
Individual Reflection: Luke 1:1-4; 4:14-21
Reflect upon how you live the words of the scroll. Which words are the hardest for you to actualize? What is one action you will take this week to more authentically live the words of the scroll?
Family Reflection: 1st Corinthians 12:12-30
Draw a picture with the various talents each family member has to live as the body of Christ.
List one or two upcoming events, legislative action alerts or social justice websites
By Barb Born January 17, 2013 The reflection maybe used in parish bulletins, newsletters or for faith sharing groups without copyright concerns.