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11 January, 2021

– 17-1-2021 –

Gospel reading: John 1:35-42

vs.35 As John stood with two of his disciples,
vs.36 Jesus passed, and John stared hard at him and said, “Look, there is the lamb of God.”
vs.37 Hearing this, the two disciples followed Jesus.
vs.38 Jesus turned round, saw them following and said, “What do you want?” They answered, “Rabbi,” – which means Teacher – “Where do you live?”
vs.39 Come and see he replied; so they went and saw where he lived, and stayed with him the rest of that day. It was about the tenth hour.
Jesus, Andy&Petervs.40 One of these two who became followers of Jesus after hearing what John had said was Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter.

vs.41 Early next morning, Andrew met his brother and said to him, “We have found the Messiah” – which means the Christ –
vs.42 and he took Simon to Jesus. Jesus looked hard at him and said, “You are Simon son of John; you are to be called Cephas” – meaning Rock.


We have four commentators available from whom you may wish to choose . Scroll down to the name of the commentator.

Michel DeVerteuil :     A Trinidadian Holy Ghost Father, late director of the Centre of Biblical renewal .
Thomas O’Loughlin:  Professor of Historical Theology University of Nottingham NG7 2RD
Sean Goan:                    Studied scripture in Rome, Jerusalem and Chicago and teaches at Blackrock College and works with Le Chéile
Donal Neary SJ:        
Editor of The Sacred Heart Messenger and National Director of The Apostlship of Prayer.


Michel DeVerteuil
Lectio Divina with the Sunday Gospels

General Comments

call of jesusOn this Sunday, every year, there is an extract from St John’s gospel, taken from the beginning of the public ministry of Jesus, which serves as a preliminary to the continuous reading which will begin on the following Sunday.

In this passage we have St John’s account of the calling of the first disciples. It differs markedly from the account given in the synoptic gospels, and has its own richness and depth. The passage is in three sections:
– verses 35 – 36: The testimony of John the Baptist: admire the marvelous humility of the precursor, model for all those involved in giving guidance to others. You might also like to spend some time reflecting on the famous title of Jesus, Lamb of God.
–   verses 38 – 39: The encounter between the disciples and Jesus is simple   and down-to-earth, but also very deep. Let it remind you of meetings that have affected you or people you know.
– verses 40 – 42: To understand the power of the story, you must be aware of the significance of names in the Bible. A person’s name indicates the nature of the person, who the person is deep down. In giving Peter a new name, therefore, Jesus invites him to rise to new possibilities. It is important that Jesus had to “look hard” before he could discover what this new name should be.

Prayer Reflection  

Lord, we thank you for people who guided us but did not try to possess us:
parents, teachers, spiritual guides, friends.
For a time we stood with them.
Very simply, like John the Baptist,
they said to us, “Look, there is the one you should follow,”
and hearing this we followed that person.

youth prayerLord, there are many people who want to do great things for you,
to excel in mighty deeds that will win them glory.
But from time to time someone comes into our lives
and just by looking at them we can say, “Look, there is a lamb of God,”
someone who is willing to do the humble things,
to be patient and to endure.
That is Jesus passing by.

 “It is time to realise that neither socialism nor good-neighbourism in no  respect can be
produced by bayonets, tanks or blood.”
…Edward Shevardnadze
Lord, we pray for leaders.
So often they think they can win our allegiance
with threats or great promises and propaganda.
Sometimes even Church leaders think like that.
Teach them that to win people’s trust is a deep process.
They cannot force it on us.
We must start following them ourselves
and only then should they ask “What do you want?”
They will always find that what we want to know is how they are
in the truth and honesty of their homes.
They must come straight with us, invite us to come and see,
and then be willing to have us stay with them.
Only after that will we be able to say, “Yes, we have found our Leader.”

“Often I go off in dreams about living and being with the poor;
  what the poor need, however, is not my dreams but my concrete presence.”  …Jean Vanier
Lord, we are like Jesus only when we turn to those following us
and invite them to comes and see where we live
and then let them stay with us the rest of the day.

Lord, forgive us that we have allowed all transactions to become
occasions for making money,
even such deeply human encounters as healing a sick person.,
counselling those in distress, or protecting the rights of the oppressed.
These meetings should be like what happens
between Jesus and his first disciples –
human beings going to visit a leader and spending a day with him
and then saying to their friends, “We have found someone who can save us.”

Lord, like many other societies around the world,
we have a tendency to categorize people.
We characterize whole groups as lazy, or incompetent, or dishonest
because they belong to a particular ethnic group;
or because they attend a certain kind of school;
or because they live in a particular part of the city.
Send us people like Jesus who will look deeply at others, dispelling all prejudices,
and will say to them: “Society has called you by one name;
from now on you shall be known as free and creative people.”


 Thomas O’Loughlin
Liturgical Resources for the Year of Matthew

Introduction to the Celebration

We have assembled here because each of us has heard, in one way or another, the call of Jesus to come to him and see the life he offers us. happyAnd because we have heard that call to become disciples, we are now thanking the Father for his love in creating us, in caring for us, and sending his Son among us. This theme of being called to be disciples runs through our reflections and prayers today.
Now, let us reflect that we have been called by Jesus to be disciples, let us ask for the strength to continue in his way, and let us ask pardon for those times when we have followed other paths and other ways.

Homily notes

1. Today we set out on a journey of remembering. We do this by beginning to read a set of readings from the gospels that will take us from now until, roughly, the end of November. This journey will be in two parts: between today and the beginning of Lent, and then second part will begin after Easter and end with the Feast of Christ the King. Walking with JesusIt is a journey that is supposed to give us a sense of the mystery of Jesus being recalled among us each Sunday so that we as a community can get a better grasp of his message of forgiveness, of the love of the Father for us, and of how we can grow to be his disciples.

2. Today we open this journey by reminding ourselves that we are Christians because Jesus has called us to be his disciples —and we do this reminding by telling the story of the call of just two of the disciples: the brothers Andrew and Peter.

3. However, for many of us this sense that we are called is not something that we feel. We are Christians, many of us think, simply as a matter of geography, a simple accident of birth. For many of us, we have never thought about any other religion or indeed that being a Christian was a definite act of choice: it just came to us as part of the fabric of life, like our language or our traditions of dress or our sense of nationality. We are, very often, cradle Christians. For us, the event of baptism was not so much a great moment of decision as a social event linked to a new baby when we got ‘christened’ —in the sense that we then formally were given our name.

4. But while we may have inherited our religion as a matter of geography — and that was true also of Jesus and Andrew and Peter — that is not the same as having a relationship with God. This relationship is always a matter of adult commitment. It is something that involves us mind and heart and soul.

5. This relationship is one of becoming disciples: followers and students of Jesus, people who share their lives with Jesus, people who wish to know where and how he lives.


6. This normally does not come about all of a sudden: like most of our relationships it is built up over time, it is a process of getting to know ourselves and getting to know him as the source of truth, the source of life, and as the way to the Father.

7. Today we hear the call to begin a process of discipleship: ‘Come and see.’ We are here, ready indeed to share the table of Jesus, but also in need to set out afresh in the commitment of discipleship.
The invitation to ‘come and see’ is for some of us a call to begin an adult relationship of discipleship and then let it grow over the coming months through prayer, sharing, and Christian action.

8. The invitation to ‘come and see’ is for others of us a call to revive an adult relationship of discipleship and then to revive over the coming months a life of prayer, sharing, and Christian action.

9. Each of us is called to be a disciple of the one Lord,jesus-&-womanatthewell and we are all made one with him in baptism, but what that discipleship demands of each of us, our vocations, is something that is specific and unique to each of us. That each of us has this unique, non-transferable vocation is something that should be a cause of our thanksgiving for us at this Eucharist; that each of us still has other aspects of that unique vocation to discover should be one of our petitions at this Eucharist.


Sean Goan
Let the Reader Understand

Gospel notes : John 1:35-42

The gospel of John offers a different perspective when it comes to certain aspects of Jesus’ life and the response he evokes. This is very clear in today’s gospel text which tells of the call of the first disciples. In the other gospels, Jesus simply says ‘Follow me’ and they do (see next Sunday). John, however, deJesus calmsscribes something of a process whereby firstly they come to know something of Jesus through the word of the Baptist who calls him the Lamb of God. They follow behind Jesus, interested to know where he lives and Jesus in turn invites them to ‘Come and see.’ As the fourth gospel progresses it becomes clear that this invitation is actually a call to discipleship, to embark on a journey of faith during which they will come to a greater understanding of who Jesus is and what it means to be with him. This becomes very clear in the stories of the Samaritan Woman (chapter 4) and the Man born Blind (chapter 9) where each of them is brought gradually to a point of recognition and faith.


The idea of a relationship of trusting faithfulness underlies the notion of faith in the Bible, and everything else including our morality flows from this. we can learn a great deal from both Samuel and Paul about a morality based on the scriptures. For these men, all their actions arose out of their relationship with God. This was the determining factor when they asked themselves the question ‘What should I do if today many people fail to understand the demands of a Christian morality, could it be that like the boy Samuel they ‘have as yet no knowledge of the Lord’? If our approach to morality is based solely on our own wants and needs, then Paul’s statement that ‘You are not your own property, you have been bought and paid for’ will make no sense to us. Christian living is really only possible when we have come to know Christ and have responded to the invitation to ‘Come and see.’


Donal Neary SJ
Gospel Reflections


Good things take time

We need time for the best things in life to come to fruition.  Love grows in marriage, friendship and family over many years. It has significant moments but often it cannot be rushed. Jesus’ disciples were invited to stay with him the rest of that day to get to know him; it would not happen immediately at the river.  ‘Rest of the day’ would mean a very long time.

How well do I know Jesus?   How much do I know about him? These are two different types of knowledge, like I can know everything about a person and not know the person.

What do I find out in this reading about Jesus?  He is one who does not force himself on people – he asks ‘what do you want?’ He likes an honest answer.  He looks into people and sees more to them, like he did with Peter and gave him a new name.  He saw faithfulness in Peter even though others would see weakness.

When we read a gospel story, we can pause here and there and ask, what is new in this story about Jesus?   Or what is new about myself? The gospel is always new. It is a treasure chest to bring out new aspects of the truth of Jesus each time we read it.

In prayer he has time for each of us. They stayed with him for a long time and he does not seem to hurry them. The lord is not in a hurry with us in any way except to love us.

Let the words, ‘Come and see’ echo in your mind and heart today and this week.
Lord, thank you for calling me to the Eucharist;
thank you for calling me into prayer.