January 24, 2016: Third Sunday of Ordinary Time
Catholic Social Teaching: Solidarity
Peace is built up day after day in the pursuit of an order willed by God and can flourish only when all recognize that everyone is responsible for promoting it.To prevent conflicts and violence, it is absolutely necessary that peace begin to take root as a value rooted deep within the heart of every person. In this way it can spread to families and to the different associations within society until the whole of the political community is involved. In a climate permeated with harmony and respect for justice, an authentic culture of peace can grow and can even pervade the entire international community. Peace is, consequently, the fruit of “that harmony structured into human society by its Divine Founder and which must be actualized by men as they aspire for ever greater justice”. Such an ideal of peace “cannot be obtained on earth unless the welfare of man is safeguarded and people freely and trustingly share with one another the riches of their minds and their talents”.
(495) Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church
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
Catechism of the Catholic Church
“Justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God,” “sanctified . . . (and) called to be saints,” Christians have become the temple of the Holy Spirit. This “Spirit of the Son” teaches them to pray to the Father and, having become their life, prompts them to act so as to bear “the fruit of the Spirit”17 by charity in action. Healing the wounds of sin, the Holy Spirit renews us interiorly through a spiritual transformation. He enlightens and strengthens us to live as “children of light” through “all that is good and right and true. (1695)
From the Daily Roman Missal, Introduction to the Third Sunday of Ordinary Time, Cycle C
Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church:
The benevolence and mercy that inspire God’s actions and provide the key for understanding them become so very much closer to man that they take on the traits of the man Jesus, the Word made flesh. In the Gospel of Saint Luke, Jesus describes his messianic ministry with the words of Isaiah which recall the prophetic significance of the jubilee: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach the good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord” (Lk4:18-19; cf. Is 61:1-2). Jesus therefore places himself on the frontline of fulfilment, not only because he fulfils what was promised and what was awaited by Israel, but also in the deeper sense that in him the decisive event of the history of God with mankind is fulfilled. He proclaims: “He who has seen me has seen the Father” (Jn 14:9). Jesus, in other words, is the tangible and definitive manifestation of how God acts towards men and women. (28)
1st Corinthians 12:13
“God shows no partiality” (Acts 10:34; cf. Rom 2:11; Gal 2:6; Eph 6:9), 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: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Gal 3:28; cf. Rom 10:12; 1 Cor 12:13, Col 3:11).
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. Moreover, this is the ultimate foundation of the radical equality and brotherhood among all people, regardless of their race, nation, sex, origin, culture, or class. (144)
Faith is not a solitary expression. We cannot proclaim the Word to ourselves for efficacy. For the true manifestation of the Lord becomes present in transformation outside the vacuum our own internalized thought, where we interact in the ebb and flow of others’ lives. The day to experience the Lord comes not through our own formulation, but in the holiness of the Lord’s design. We may view precepts of perfection as unattainable, leaving us in a spiral of sad emotions, weeping over our inadequacies. God’s offering of His decrees cause us to ponder spiritual perfection as a challenge to see Divine design. The “what ifs” in our lives to accept the opportunity to envision the ordinances of the Lord as true and just. What would our lives look like? What would our world look like? For this is God’s gift to strive us on beyond our frailties, to take the scroll of His word that is handed to us in the time and place we live to proclaim it by our lives. An expression of faith with echoes and reverberation across the interactions of our lives, the physical presence and unseen consequences beyond perception. An infusion of Spirit and life into our being that is refreshing, enfolds us with simplistic wisdom, and leads us to rejoice as our spiritual eyes are enlightened. All blessings to make us balanced disciples to see, hear and use our hands and feet in faithful service, for we receive communion to live in communion with the Trinity and humanity.
Individual Reflection: Luke 1:1-4; 4:14-21
What portion of Scripture do you feel you are to proclaim by the way you live your life?
Family Reflection 1st Corinthians 12:12-30
Download Bread for the World’s Lenten Prayers for Hungry People and share with family and friends:
http://www.bread.org/lent and click on downloads for Lenten table tents
Entrance antiphon, “O sing a new song to the Lord…”
What song of faith will you sing this day as a prayer?
Blogs to Visit:
As we reflect upon Mary’s presence in the mysteries of the Rosary, we are blessed to know her. For her journey, a timeless trek, calls us to surrender, continuing conversion, humbleness and justice now.
Weekly lectionary reflections, for faith sharing groups, parish bulletins, newsletters or personal prayer, from the synergy of the Word we hear and the rich tradition of Catholic Social Teaching.
Catholic Social Teaching offers seven principles for upholding life in our thoughts, decisions and actions.
How we do Catholic Social Teaching.
Creation sustainability ministry resources in the spirit of the St Francis Pledge.
List one or two upcoming events, legislative action alerts or social justice websites
By Barb Born, January 20, 2016 The reflection maybe used in parish bulletins, newsletters or for faith sharing groups without copyright concern.