1 February 2015
4th Sunday in Ordinary Time • Divine Office Week IV • Year B
Presentation of the Lord
Welcoming the Lord
by Denis McBride C.Ss.R.
n today’s Gospel Jesus is
welcomed into the synagogue
and he makes a deep impression
on everyone. Why does he make
such an impact? Because people
can readily see that Jesus acts
with authority: when he speaks,
something happens. When most
of us speak, it has to be said that
nothing much happens: we decorate
the air with language, hoping that
something might land, that our
words might make a difference. We
wait for a response. And then we
wait some more. In the absence of
something happening, we wonder
why our words have not achieved
what we had hoped.
The difference with Jesus is that
his word becomes an event: what
he says actually happens. And the
people welcome this, saying: “This is
a teaching that is new.” The teaching
is new because people can see it
taking place before their eyes. This is
different from what they are used to.
This is new. This is a word that comes
Tomorrow is the feast of the
Presentation, when Mary and
Joseph take Jesus up to the Temple
in Jerusalem. The old prophet
Simeon welcomes this child, takes
him into his arms, declaring that
his life’s mission is now over, having
set eyes on the salvation which he
has awaited all his life. The child
does not say anything; he speaks no
words. His presence, not his words,
provokes the welcoming response.
Can we be Simeon and welcome
the Lord into our lives? Can we, like
the people of Capernaum, welcome
this new word? Can we take the
Lord into our lives, believing that
welcoming him will make a real
difference? There is only one way we
will know – by doing it.
To be Christ-like
Shine in and through me so that I
might reflect your love at all times
and in all places. Lord, teach me to
be like you. Amen.
A-Z of healthy living
by Sr Janet Fearns
by Sr Thérèse Garman
Lord, when I looked in the mirror this
morning, I saw myself and did not
see much of you. I saw the moments
when, with a little more effort, I could
have been stronger, more just, more
generous, more willing to put the
needs of others before my own. My
faults and failings were more obvious
than my list of good deeds.
Lord, I am not perfect; both you
and I know that only too well. Yet
you love me, just as I am, warts and
all. Every time I fall you are there,
helping to pick me up and set me off
on the road towards you once again.
Lord, help me to follow you more
closely. Help me to be more like you.
In Luke 19:1-10, we see how Jesus
made a difference by being involved
in people’s lives, and their world.
How can we make a difference in the
lives of our neighbours, our family,
our work colleagues? Do we care
enough to be involved? Jesus became
involved by going out among the
people. He met Zacchaeus among
the crowds in Jericho, despite the
fact that Zacchaeus was up a tree.
Do we notice the individual in the
crowd? Jesus did not meet people
by chance, but with a purpose. He
intentionally helped Zacchaeus find
God. His involvement was friendly,
supportive and accepting, and this
Deuteronomy 18:15-20
1 Corinthians 7:32-35
Mark 1:21-28
redemp orist
p u b l i c a t i o n s
Malachi 3:1-4
Hebrews 2:14-18
Luke 2:22-40
People seldom
improve when they
have no other model
but themselves to
Charlie T. Jones
and Bob Phillips,
Wit & Wisdom
Hebrews 12:1-4
Mark 5:21-43
Hebrews 12:4-7. 11-15
Mark 6:1-6
Hebrews 12:18-19. 21-24
Mark 6:7-13
Sunday Plus. Edited by Denis McBride C.Ss.R. and Lisa Gregoire. Copyright © Redemptorist Publications,
Alphonsus House, Chawton, Hampshire GU34 3HQ, a registered charity. www.rpbooks.co.uk/plus
Hebrews 13:1-8
Mark 6:14-29
started a relationship. To connect
people to God we must first befriend
them. Many obstacles separate us
from people. For Jesus there was
the distance – Zacchaeus was up a
tree, he felt condemned by people
and he carried guilt about his past
life. Jesus removed the obstacles by
befriending him. Are we willing to
make a difference to people’s lives by
getting involved, despite criticisms
and apparent obstacles?
I fear that
Christians who
stand with only one
leg upon earth, also
stand with only one
leg in heaven.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer, theologian
Hebrews 13:15-17. 20-21
Mark 6:30-34
Next Sunday:
Job 7:1-4. 6-7
1 Corinthians 9:16-19. 22-23
Mark 1:29-39