Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time - 25th June 2017

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Reading 1, Jeremiah 20:10-13

10 I heard so many disparaging me, 'Terror on every side! Denounce him! Let us denounce him!' All those who were on good terms with me watched for my downfall, 'Perhaps he will be seduced into error. Then we shall get the better of him and take our revenge!'

11 But Yahweh is at my side like a mighty hero; my opponents will stumble, vanquished, confounded by their failure; everlasting, unforgettable disgrace will be theirs.

12 Yahweh Sabaoth, you who test the upright, observer of motives and thoughts, I shall see your vengeance on them, for I have revealed my cause to you.

13 Sing to Yahweh, praise Yahweh, for he has delivered the soul of one in need from the clutches of evil doers.

The Word of the Lord.


Responsorial Psalm, Psalms 69:8-10, 14, 17, 33-35

Lord, in your great love, answer me.

8 I am estranged from my brothers, alienated from my own mother's sons;

9 for I am eaten up with zeal for your house, and insults directed against you fall on me.

10 I mortify myself with fasting, and find myself insulted for it,

14 Rescue me from the mire before I sink in; so I shall be saved from those who hate me, from the watery depths.

17 do not turn away from your servant, be quick to answer me, for I am in trouble.

33 For God listens to the poor, he has never scorned his captive people.

34 Let heaven and earth and seas, and all that stirs in them, acclaim him!

35 For God will save Zion, and rebuild the cities of Judah, and people will live there on their own land;

 

Reading 2, Romans 5:12-15

12 Well then; it was through one man that sin came into the world, and through sin death, and thus death has spread through the whole human race because everyone has sinned.

13 Sin already existed in the world before there was any law, even though sin is not reckoned when there is no law.

14 Nonetheless death reigned over all from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sin was not the breaking of a commandment, as Adam's was. He prefigured the One who was to come . . .

15 There is no comparison between the free gift and the offence. If death came to many through the offence of one man, how much greater an effect the grace of God has had, coming to so many and so plentifully as a free gift through the one man Jesus Christ!

The Word of the Lord.

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The Spirit of truth will testify to me, says the Lord;
and you also will identify.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel, Matthew 10:26-33

"Fear not - you are of more value than many sparrows"

26 'So do not be afraid of them. Everything now covered up will be uncovered, and everything now hidden will be made clear.

27 What I say to you in the dark, tell in the daylight; what you hear in whispers, proclaim from the housetops.

28 'Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; fear him rather who can destroy both body and soul in hell.

29 Can you not buy two sparrows for a penny? And yet not one falls to the ground without your Father knowing.

30 Why, every hair on your head has been counted.

31 So there is no need to be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.

32 'So if anyone declares himself for me in the presence of human beings, I will declare myself for him in the presence of my Father in heaven.

33 But the one who disowns me in the presence of human beings, I will disown in the presence of my Father in heaven.

The Gospel of the Lord.

Reflection: What is godly fear? It is reverence for the One who made us in love and who sustains us in mercy and kindness. The greatest injury or loss which we can experience is not physical but spiritual - the loss of one's soul to the power of hell. A healthy fear of God leads to spiritual maturity, wisdom and right judgment and it frees us from the tyranny of sinful pride, cowardice - especially in the face of evil, and spiritual deception. Do you trust in God's grace and mercy and submit to his word?

When Jesus proclaimed the kingdom of God he met opposition and hostility. He tells his disciples that they must expect the same treatment if they are to live and to proclaim the reign of God. There is both a warning and a privilege in his statement. Just as Jesus had to carry his cross, so the disciples must carry their cross and not try to evade it. To suffer for the faith is to share in the work of Christ. As one hymn states: Lift high the Cross of Christ! Tread where his feet have trod. The Holy Spirit gives us power and grace to live as disciples of Jesus Christ. Do you trust in God’s grace to carry your cross for Jesus' sake?

Prayer: "Lord Jesus, it is my joy and privilege to be your disciple. Give me strength and courage to bear any hardship and suffering which may come my way in your service. May I witness to others the joy of the Gospel." Amen

Let us "live no longer for" ourselves "but for Him" (2 Cor 5:15).


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