January 14, 2018: Second Week in Ordinary Time
Catholic Social Teaching: Solidarity
Explore questions associated with solidarity. How is solidarity woven in Jesus’ question, “What are you looking for/”
First Reading: 1st Samuel 3:3b-10. 19
Psalm: 40:2, 4, 7-8, 8-9, 10
Second Reading: 1st Corinthians 6:13c-15a, 17-20
Gospel: John 1:35-42
Catechism of the Catholic Church
Jesus is the Father’s Emissary. From the beginning of his ministry, he “called to him those whom he desired; . . . . And he appointed twelve, whom also he named apostles, to be with him, and to be sent out to preach.” From then on, they would also be his “emissaries” (Greek apostoloi). In them, Christ continues his own mission: “As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.”369 The apostles’ ministry is the continuation of his mission; Jesus said to the Twelve: “he who receives you receives me.”(858)
From the Daily Roman Missal, Introduction to the Second Sunday of Ordinary Time, Cycle B
Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church:
1st Corinthians 6:20
The Church moves further into the Third Millennium of the Christian era as a pilgrim people, guided by Christ, the “great Shepherd” (Heb 13:20). He is the “Holy Door” (cf. Jn 10:9) through which we passed during the Great Jubilee of the year 2000. Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth and the Life (cf. Jn 14:6): contemplating the Lord’s face, we confirm our faith and our hope in him, the one Saviour and goal of history.
The Church continues to speak to all people and all nations, for it is only in the name of Christ that salvation is given to men and women. Salvation, which the Lord Jesus obtained “at a price” (1 Cor 6:20; cf. 1 Pet 1:18-19), is achieved in the new life that awaits the righteous after death, but it also permeates this world in the realities of the economy and labour, of technology and communications, of society and politics, of the international community and the relations among cultures and peoples. “Jesus came to bring integral salvation, one which embraces the whole person and all mankind, and opens up the wondrous prospect of divine filiation”. (1)
The Church teaches men and women that God offers them the real possibility of overcoming evil and attaining good. The Lord has redeemed mankind “bought with a price” (1 Cor 6:20). The meaning and basis of the Christian commitment in the world are founded on this certainty, which gives rise to hope despite the sin that deeply marks human history. The divine promise guarantees that the world does not remain closed in upon itself but is open to the Kingdom of God. The Church knows the effects of “the mystery of lawlessness” (2 Thes 2:7), but she also knows that “there exist in the human person sufficient qualities and energies, a fundamental ‘goodness’ (cf. Gen 1:31), because he is the image of the Creator, placed under the redemptive influence of Christ, who ‘united himself in some fashion with every man’, and because the efficacious action of the Holy Spirit ‘fills the earth’ (Wis 1:7)”. (578)
Jesus loves to ask questions, but are we listening? A style not inflicting authoritarian dominance, but camaraderie, openness to dialogue and in the potential silence following a question an inclination to ponder. No need for an instantaneous reply, but acknowledgement of Divine presence in our midst affirming our humanity, asking for our reciprocity affirming a life encompassing mission. Achieved only if we accept the invitation to come and see. Jesus desires to be our teacher by examining our inmost depths, not demanding us to recite columns of verbiage, for that would be hypocritical babbling lacking the sincerity he desires. A new song, not of dogma, sacrifice or obligational offering, but written on our heart that we never restrain our lips from proclaiming. Words of justice needed to move vast assemblies of culture to follow his prodding from questions garnering initiative to believe and live. Will we follow the invitation of Jesus to come and will we see? Where was Jesus staying that day of the initial question, who was he hanging out with, what inspired Andrew to seek out his brother Simon Peter and exclaim,”We have found the Messiah!” Those same rhetorical questions settle in the hearts of all believers. For Jesus has asked each one of us those simple and profound words. Do we gloss over them with slight glances, profound stares or flash on tinted lenses to mute the brilliance of the call? If we realize we are members of the Body of Christ, temples of the Holy Spirit, how can we not offer a positive affirmation to come and do the Lord’s will? A realization we own nothing and even our bodies are wrought of God’s creation. We cease possessing our lives to living our lives for God through the questions Christ asks us. By pondering the Word, prayerful souls and receptivity to Christ’s presence in the Eucharist, our responses to the Lord’s questions gain clarity, a resolve to live the Mystery to what seems nonsense to worldly finite paradigms. His law written within our heart has no cursive demands only to love justice, do right and walk humbly with our God. How will that be personified in your life this day, this week, this year and until you embrace in the arms of Jesus for all eternity? All we must do is answer his question, “What are you looking for?” And follow to see where he is staying in sometimes surprising, unexpected places of our world. Blessings on the journey and keep listening!
Individual Reflection: John 1:35-42
Read the book Questions of Jesus: Challenging Ourselves to Discover Life’s Great Answers by Fr John Dear and ponder “What are you looking for?” and other questions Jesus asks throughout the Gospel.
Family Reflection: Samuel 3:3b-10, 19
One month from today Lent starts. As a family considering doing CRS Rice Bowl during your Lenten journey to better listen in solidarity to the cry of the poor in our world: https://www.crsricebowl.org
Prayer: How would you prayerfully write Psalm 40 from today’s readings to harmonize the refrain, “Here I am Lord, I come to do your will”?
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.
Social Ministry Resources Engaging Parishes: Monthly and liturgical seasons resources for use with parish websites, bulletins and newsletters
List one or two upcoming events, legislative action alerts or social justice websites
By Barb Born January 1, 2018 The reflection maybe used in parish bulletins, newsletters or for faith sharing groups without copyright concern.