for Sunday, January 10, 2010
The Gospel today reflects the experience of the early followers of Jesus.
At first Jesus seems just a normal being, a young man who practices Judaism
like all of his friends and family. Slowly there comes an understanding
that He is the One who is to come, foretold by John the Baptist. The early
followers of Jesus did not have the clear teachings of the Church, the
example of the saints, nor the witness of living communities dedicated to
Some people today want to believe that the Church is wrong, that saints
are just relatively good people and that there is no need for living
communities dedicated to the Lord Jesus. Some believe that the Church is a
purely human institution and perhaps has done more evil that good
throughout its history.
Faith is a gift and a mercy, as we hear in the Letter to Titus today. It
is a gift for which we can pray and a gift to which we can be open. Not
many today have the intense thinking capacity of Plato who was able use his
own reason to come to some knowledge of God.
The God of Jesus Christ, however, reaches out to us and invites us to
study the Scriptures and to come to know him. Isaiah the Prophet, in
today's first reading, echoes the hopes and desires of so many people who
are not where they want to be, not who they want to be, who have been
enslaved in one way or another.
At the Baptism of Jesus, something awesome happened. We are not sure what
happened, but certainly something truly happened and Jesus takes up His
ministry and people begin to recognize in Him the authentic teaching of
God, a chosen servant of God and one who carries the sins of the world.
This Sunday also marks the end of the Christmas Season. When Jesus comes
to be baptized, all of creation recognizes Him as Lord. He Himself seems
to understand at this point that He must preach the good news. Thus the
public ministry of Jesus begins with His baptism and for us Ordinary Time
The time ahead of us is a time to listen attentively to the Word of the
Lord, to listen to the words of Jesus and to look for the divine shining
through all people and all creation. We can experience this God who loves
us by becoming more aware of our own love, more aware of the mystery of
human life, more aware of the goodness in every human person. If we want
to know love, we must begin to practice and to be love in our own lives.
May our Lord Jesus help us this year!
Readings of the day:
Reflections are available for the following Sundays: