Ordinary Season of the Year. (a)
Weekdays – Year 1
Sunday 8th October: Twenty-Seventh Sunday of the Year. (a)
The first reading is from the Prophet Isaiah. Through the prophet, God recounts all that he has done for his people and shows sadness at the level of response. Israel is the well cared for vineyard.
St. Paul, in the letter to the Philippians, reminds us that peace is promised to all who ask God’s help with devotion, sincerity and trust. We do not need to be anxious.
The Gospel story is another parable. It presents a story of generous love and a poor response. It is reflecting the sadness of the first reading. Just as the Jews rejected the prophets and those who had gone before him, so too they will reject Jesus. Our failure to respond in kind to God’s generous love is the reality behind the story.
Monday 9th October: Monday of the 27th week of the year.
Today we move on to another book connected with the exile in Babylon. The Book of Jonah is regarded as a sermon in the form of a story. It teaches that the mercy of God extends to all nations and is not restricted to the Chosen People. Jonah initially tries to avoid the mission given to him by God, travelling in the opposite direction to Nineveh but the Lord had other plans for him.
As always, the lawyers always had a trick question with which to try to trap Jesus. They believed that they should only look after their ‘own kind.’ That was how they understood ‘love your neighbour.’ Jesus uses the parable of the Good Samaritan to teach them otherwise.
Tuesday 10th October: Tuesday of the 27th week of the year.
In this section from the Prophet Jonah, we read that, when Jonah eventually got to the great city of Nineveh, he was successful in persuading the people to repent of their sinful ways. From the highest level, the king, down all applied themselves and as a result God relented and did not allow disaster to fall on them.
The Gospel is a stark reminder to make sure we are taking time for God in our busy lives. Jesus stresses the need to stop, reflect and pray.
Wednesday 11th October: Wednesday of the 27th week of the year.
The reaction of the people in Nineveh showed again how God’s mercy is not restricted, a response which surprises Jonah. Many people in Nineveh did not realise the wrong they were doing until Jonah preaches to them.
Yesterday we were told of the need to make time. Today Jesus gives an example of how to pray – the Lord’s Prayer.
Today is also the Memorial of Pope St. John XX111, who dies in 1963. Within months of his election to the Papacy, he announced the convocation of the second Vatican Council.
Thursday 12th October: Thursday of the 27th week of the year.
Malachi, from whom the first reading comes, lived some years after the end of the exile. He assures the people who were doing evil and not seeming to be punished, that they would, in time, be called to judgement by God. The good deeds that people do would also be recorded for the final judgement before the throne of God.
In the Gospel, Jesus continues his lesson on prayer. To be real prayer it has to be trusting and persevering. If we have faith, we should not hesitate to ask.
Friday 13th October: Friday of the 37th week of the year.
Joel is the last of the books that deal with the period after the exile. In this passage there is a real sense of foreboding amongst the Israelites because they have again turned their back on God. The fear is stressed that the day of the Lord is coming when they will face judgement.
Jesus continues his teaching on the need for prayer. From prayer you will get the strength to fight the evil that is all around us. The power of God will be there to help us.
Saturday 14th October: Saturday of the 27th week of the year.
Today, Joel calls on all nations, especially those who have been responsible for the oppression of Israel, to face their judgement day. There will be great harmony in Israel but desolation and punishment in the land of their enemies.
Jesus presents us with another special lesson. We will be truly blessed if we hear the word of God, keep it and put it into action.
God the source and strength of all love.
May he bless our families
With happiness and faithfulness.
May he bless our communities
With unity and peace
And make us one heart and one soul.
May he give to all of us
A love that brings out the best
In each other.
May God bless you all
And keep his love alive