Saturday 9 December 2017

About Today Readings

Advent Season of Creation.

Isaiah 30:19-21, 23-26. Psalm 146(147):1-6. Matthew 9:35 – 10:1, 6-8.

Happy are all who long for the coming of the Lord – Psalm 146(147):1-6.

Each Advent, we are invited to long for the coming of the Lord.



In the midst of their grinding suffering, Isaiah depicts a fresh and fertile world for the people:

‘People of Zion, you will live in Jerusalem and weep no more. He will be gracious to you when he hears your cry when he hears he will answer. When the Lord has given you the bread of suffering and the water of distress, he who is your teacher will hide no longer, and you will see your teacher with your own eyes. Upon every high mountain and lofty hill, there will be streams of running water’.

Isaiah has a poet’s delight in the beauty of the world and God’s presence shining through it. It invites us to thank God and pray for the renewal of the world.

In the Gospel story, Jesus sends out his disciples to preach the Gospel. ‘They are to proclaim the good news to people who lived a half-life.

‘When he saw the crowds he felt sorry for them because they were harassed and dejected, like sheep without a shepherd’.

He responds by sending his disciples out heal, give life and welcome:

‘As you go, proclaim that the kingdom of heaven is close at hand. Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out devils. You received without charge, give without charge.’

Jesus reminds us that faith is not merely in the mind. It is a profound hope for a full life and based in trust in a God who heals and waters our lives. We pray for the healing of what has died within us.

Pope Francis emphasises the importance of appreciating our environment and thanking God for its beauty and richness. He also attends closely to the ways greed degrades the environment and stunts human beings and destroys the future. This reflects the despair that life offers no more than self and gain.

‘We must regain the conviction that we need one another, that we have a shared responsibility for others and the world, and that being good and decent is worth it. We have had enough of immorality and the mockery of ethics, goodness, faith and honesty. It is time to acknowledge that lighthearted superficiality has done us no good.’

We are invited to pray urgently for a vision of the goodness of our world and for trust in the God who heals and gives life to us and our world.


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