Fourth Sunday of Ordinary Time in Year C

Posté par diaconos le 27 janvier 2022

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This Sunday, the liturgical texts invite us to follow Christ and to participate in his mission. In doing so, we will love without measure and without borders. God’s love is for everyone, without exclusion, without exception. Since God loves usall, we in turn must love all people. In this fourth week of Ordinary Time, let us reread the second reading from the Apostle Paul’s First Letter to the Christians of Corinth and ask ourselves the question : « What is charity for me ? «  Here are the readings and some comments on them.

The first reading is from the book of Jeremiah

The liturgical texts invite us to follow Christ and to participate in his mission. In doing so, we will love without measure and without borders. God’s love is for everyone, without exclusion, without exception. Since God loves us all, we in turn must love all people. In this fourth week of Ordinary Time, let us reread the second reading from the Apostle Paul’s First Letter to the Christians of Corinth and ask ourselves the following question: « What an exception. Because God loves us all, we should in turn read from the book of Jeremiah.

On the first Sunday, the liturgical texts invite us to follow Christ and to participate in his mission. In doing so, we will love without measure and without borders. God’s love is for everyone, without exception, without exclusion. We, in turn, must love all people. In this fourth week of Ordinary Time, let us reread the second reading from the Apostle Paul’s First Letter to the Christians of Corinth and ask ourselves the following question: « What does love of neighbour really mean for me ? » Here are the readings and some comments on them.

 All people. In this fourth week of Ordinary Time, let us reread the second reading from the First Epistle of the Apostle Paul to the Christians of Corinth and ask ourselves the question: « What is love of neighbour for me?  » Here are the readings and some comments on them.

  Note Jeremiah, who was a great prophet in Jerusalem (the records of his preaching range from about 627 to 587 B.C.), speaks to us in this passage of his spiritual experience: he is well aware that it is God who has chosen him (verses 4 and 5). This account of Jeremiah’s calling illustrates what prophets were in Israel: they were the spokesmen for God, a God who wanted to communicate, to make Himself known in order to establish a covenant relationship.

 Tets  Lord spoke to me and said : « Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you; before you were born, I anointed you ; I made you a prophet to the nations. Arise and speak to them as I command you. Do not tremble before them, or I will make you tremble before them. Today I will make you a fortified city, a pillar of iron, a rampart of bronze, to stand against all the land, against the kings of Judah and their chiefs, against their priests, and against all the people. They shall fight against thee, but they shall be powerless against thee; for I am with thee to deliver thee.

Psalm 7 1(70) : 5-8.15.17.19

Note This psalm of 24 verses is written in the first person singular :  » I  » is to be understood in the collective sense of  » we « . Its author is an old man who testifies to a personal but dramatic experience (see also verses 2-12 of the full text). In this passage it is Israel who speaks

From the first letter of the apostle Paul to the Corinthians

Note This text from Paul speaks first and foremost of God, he contemplates the mystery of God’s love; whenever we encounter the word ‘love’ in this text, we could replace it with the word ‘God’. Far from being utopias, the fifteen behaviours that Paul lists in his inventory are the surprising realities that experience brings to light: love, and love alone, enables the one who loves, the one who is loved, to reach heights of patience, self-forgiveness, gentleness, transparency, total trust. It is God’s love, that is, God-given love, that alone can make our communities the witnesses the world expects. The greatest virtues are nothing if they are not irrigated exclusively by the love of God himself. This puts things in their place !

Note The official proclamation of God’s saving intervention took place in the liturgy of the Temple, where a hymn was sung : « Who is God like Thou? « 

 Note Jeremiah, who was a great prophet in Jerusalem (the dates of his preaching range from about 627 to 587 BCE), speaks to us in this passage of his spiritual experience : he is well aware that it is God who has chosen him (verses 4 and 5). This account of Jeremiah’s calling illustrates what prophets were in Israel: they were the spokesmen for God, a God who wanted to communicate, to make Himself known in order to establish a covenant relationship.

Text Brothers, among the gifts of God seek the best. Well, I will show you a way that is better than all others. I can speak all the languages of heaven and earth, but if I lack charity, if I lack love, I am only a sounding brass, a sounding cymbal. I can be a prophet, I can have all the knowledge of the mysteries and all the knowledge of God, and all the faith to move mountains, but if I lack love, I am nothing. I could give all my wealth to the hungry, I could be burned alive, but if I lack love, I am nothing.

Love is patient; love is willing; love is not jealous; it is not boastful or proud; it does not do anything dishonest; it does not seek its own interest; it does not get carried away; it does not hold grudges; it does not rejoice over what is wrong, but finds joy in what is right; it endures all things, trusts all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love will never pass away. One day, prophecies will disappear, the gift of tongues will cease, the knowledge we have of God will disappear.

Because our knowledge is incomplete, our prophecies are incomplete. When the completion comes, what is partial will disappear. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, thought like a child, reasoned like a child. Now that I am a man, I have eliminated that which made me a child. At present we see a dark image in a mirror; on that day we shall see face to face. At present my knowledge is incomplete; on that day I shall truly know as God has known me. What remains today is faith, hope and charity, but the greatest of these is charity.

 From the Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke

Today : this is the first word and the key word of his first sermon in the synagogue of his childhood. It could not be more concrete, because his whole person speaks of God. God so loved the world that he gave his only Son. This sentence of the Gospel is addressed to Jesus’ listeners ; to the first Christians for whom Luke writes; to the readers of all times and thus also to us. With Jesus, the Word of God is in the present. It is in his person. How do you receive this word of Christ in your life, in your community ? How do you receive it when you read the Bible and attend Mass ?

The love of God, of the one who is loved, is reaching heights of patience, self-forgiveness, gentleness, transparency, total trust. It is God’s love, that is, the God-given love, which alone can make our fellowshipFrom the first letter of the Apostle Paul to the Corinthians

Note  This text of Paul speaks first of all about God, he contemplates the mystery of God’s love; whenever we encounter the word « love » in this text, we could replace it with the word « God ». Far from being utopias, the fifteen behaviours that Paul lists in his inventory are the surprising realities that experience brings to light: love, and love alone, makes it possible to lose the one who gives the testimony that the world expects. The greatest virtues are nothing if they are not irrigated exclusively by the love of God himself. This puts things in their place !

Commentary This word of Scripture, which you have just heard, has been fulfilled today », which is tantamount to saying: « I am the Messiah for whom you are waiting ». Jesus was not accepted by his countrymen because he was too frank with them! Jesus only proclaimed a message of grace and love for all people. His message of love also concerns, and with preference, the heathen : the whole biblical history is there to prove it. This is too much ! This new prophet has to die. He will die later because of his project of universal love. Yes, indeed, God loves without limits: He loves unbelievers, sinners, the ungrateful… We are not jealous, we are ready to imitate the gratuitousness of God’s love. In order to realise God’s project of universal love, we run the risk of encountering misunderstandings, even among those who are closest to us; does this paralyse us or do we continue straight on our path?

 Note 1  Sidon is said to be one of the oldest cities on the Phoenician coast, founded by the son of Canaan, grandson of Noah.

 Note 2 Elijah is a prophet in monotheistic religions. He was the prophet of Israel in the 9th century BC after the death of Solomon. He is the inspired spokesman of God’s will against the Canaanite god Baal. His biography and that of his successor Elisha are recorded in the first and second books of Kings.

Note 3 Naaman, lieutenant of Benadad, king of Syria, was cured of leprosy after taking seven baths in the Jordan.

Text Then he began to say that the word of the Scriptures, which you have just heard, is being fulfilled today. 22 They all testified of him and marvelled at the message of grace he spoke. They wondered :    »Surely you will quote the saying to me. Doctor, heal thyself. We have heard what happened in Capernaum, so do the same here in your own country !  » Is this the son of Joseph?

This one. But he said to them : Then he added :  » Amen, I tell you that no prophet is welcome in his own land. I tell you the truth : in the time of Elijah the prophet, when there was drought and famine for three and a half years, there were many widows in Israel, but Elijah was not sent to any of them, but to a foreign widow from the city of Sare Ptah in the land of Sidon. « In the days of Elisha the prophet there were many lepers in Israel, but none was cleansed except Naaman, a Syrian.

At these words everyone in the synagogue was furious. They got up and pushed Jesus out of the city and led him up a steep hill where the city was built, to throw him down. But He continued His way.

Deacon Michel Houyoux

links to other Christian sites

◊ Benedictine Abbey (Monastery of Christ in the Desert) : click here to read the paper → Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C 

◊  .Auckland catholic.org   : click here to read the paper  →  Fourth Sunday in  Ordinary timr, year C

♥ Homily of the Reverent Brother Chito Dimaranan SDB

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