For the last couple months, I’ve been sharing our Sunday Mass readings and homily message on a message board I belong to. I’d like to share them here too.
We had the opportunity to visit St. Mary’s in Bismarck this weekend. Our readings were Isaiah 8:23-9:3, Psalm 27, 1 Cor 1:10-13, 17, and Matthew 4:12-23
The Gospel reading this Sunday showed how the prophesy from Isaiah was fulfilled by Jesus settling in Capernaum: “Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali, the way to the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles, the people who sit in darkness have seen a great light, on those dwelling in a land overshadowed by death light has arisen.” We also heard the calling of the Apostles in this passage. And in the New Testament reading, St.Paul instructs us to always remember that we belong to Christ and Christ alone. The people had been arguing that they belonged to Paul or Apollos or Cephas, and Paul reprimands them, reminding them the Christ is not divided. Rather, it is Christ Who died for us and we should remain united in Christ, regardless of who has brought us the message.
The priest saying Mass focused on being called to follow Christ and preach the Gospel. He reflected on how Jesus spoke with passion and conviction wherever He went. We hear this in the Gospels when various people remark about the authoritative way Jesus taught, but we also must realize it when we think of the Apostles leaving everything they have – home, family, work – to follow Him. We too are called by Christ to follow Him. We should go forth into the world with passion and conviction also. Throughout history we see people like David Koresh or Harold Camping who gathered followers to their ways of thinking. People sold all of their worldly possessions, left their families, and went after these men. Why? Because they taught with passion and conviction. We all seek after the Truth and are naturally attracted to people who seem to possess it. Therefore, we must boldly proclaim the Gospel, preaching it to all we know and teaching Christ’s message through our very lives.
***Side note: Father didn’t say this but I’ve heard it many times and want to pass it along. Preaching the Gospel doesn’t have to mean bringing Jesus into every conversation we have. The way we live our lives on a daily basis – the things we say (and the things we don’t!), the decisions we make, having a sense of peace and joy even the face of adversity, etc. – will show Jesus’ true message of love and mercy far more than anything we can every say.
“always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you,” 1 Peter 3:15
Deo Juvante, Jen