Catholic IrelandLiturgical Readings for : Friday, 27th January, 2023
Next Sunday's Readings
Friday of Third Week in Ordinary Time, Year 1
General Themes: We sometimes need to recall our first fervour in faith and let it grow like the gospel mustard seed. Night and day, while he sleeps, when he is awake, the seed of faithis sprouting and growing; how, he does not know.
A reading from the letter to the Hebrews 10:32-39
Theme: Remember all the sufferings that you had to meet. Be as confident now.
Remember all the sufferings that you had to meet after you received the light, in earlier days; sometimes by being yourselves publicly exposed to insults and violence, and sometimes as associates of others who were treated in the same way. For you not only shared in the sufferings of those who were in prison, but you happily accepted being stripped of your belongings, knowing that you owned something that was better and lasting. Be as confident now, then, since the reward is so great. You will need endurance to do God’s will and gain what he has promised.
Only a little while now, a very little while,
and the one that is coming will have come; he will not delay. The righteous man will live by faith, but if he draws back, my soul will take no pleasure in him.
You and I are not the sort of people who draw back, and are lost by it; we are the sort who keep faithful until our souls are saved.
The Word of the Lord Thanks be to God
Responsorial Psalm Ps 36
Response The salvation of the just comes from the Lord.
I. If you trust in the Lord and do good,
then you will live in the land and be secure.
If you find your delight in the Lord,
he will grant your heart’s desire. Response
2. Commit your life to the Lord,
trust in him and he will act,
so that your justice breaks forth like the light,
your cause like the noon-day sun. Response
3. The Lord guides the steps of a man
and makes safe the path of one he loves.
Though he stumble he shall never fall
for the Lord holds him by the hand. Response
4. The salvation of the just comes from the Lord,
their stronghold in time of distress.
The Lord helps them and delivers them
and saves them: for their refuge is in him. Response
Gospel Acclamation Ps 118: 27
Make me grasp the way of your precepts, and I will muse on your wonders.
Or Mt 11: 25
Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for revealing the mysteries of the kingdom to mere children.
The Lord be with you. And with your spirit
A reading from the Gospel according to Mark 4:26-34 Glory to you, O Lord
Theme: A man throws seed on the land. While he sleeps the seed is sprouting ; how, he does not know.
Jesus said to the crowd:
‘This is what the kingdom of God is like. A man throws seed on the land. Night and day, while he sleeps, when he is awake, the seed is sprouting and growing; how, he does not know. Of its own accord the land produces first the shoot, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. And when the crop is ready, he loses no time: he starts to reap because the harvest has come.’
He also said,
‘What can we say the kingdom of God is like? What parable can we find for it? It is like a mustard seed which at the time of its sowing in the soil is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; yet once it is sown it grows into the biggest shrub of them all and puts out big branches so that the birds of the air can shelter in its shade.’
Using many parables like these, he spoke the word to them, so far as they were capable of understanding it. He would not speak to them except in parables, but he explained everything to his disciples when they were alone.
The Gospel of the Lord Glory to you, O Lord
Gospel Reflection Friday, Jan. 27th Third Week in Ordinary Time Mark 4:26-34
That first parable of the seed growing secretly suggests the mystery of growth. The farmer works hard to sow the seed, but then he has to wait. In a way he does not fully understand, the seed grows of its own accord. It is only when the seed is fully grown and the crop is ripe that the farmer can get down to work again. The wise farmer knows when it is time to work, and when it is time to stand back and wait patiently, and allow nature to take its course. We are not all farmers, but like the farmer in the parable we all have to try and get that balance between working to make something happen and standing back to allow something to happen.
The balance between engagement and disengagement is important when it comes to all growth, including human growth, our own growth and the growth of others, and the growth of the church. The process of growth is not something we can fully control. That is especially true of our growth in Christ. There are certain things we can do to bring that about, but there are some things only the Lord can do. There comes a time when we have the allow the Lord to work his growth in us; that will often mean for us, easing up a little, doing less, making room for the Lord to work.
The Scripture Readings are taken from The Jerusalem Bible, published 1966/7/8 by Darton, Longman and Todd Ltd and used with the permission of the publishers. http://dltbooks.com/
The Scripture Reflection is available with our thanks from Reflections on the Weekday Readings 2022-2023: Your word is a lamp for my feet and light for my path by Martin Hogan and published by Messenger Publications c/f www.messenger.ie/bookshop/