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Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 01.02.2023

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Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 01.02.2023

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FIRST READING
“The Lord disciplines him whom he loves.”
HEBREWS 12: 4 – 7, 11 – 15

Brethren: In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. And have you forgotten the exhortation which addresses you as sons? — “My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor lose courage when you are punished by him. For the Lord disciplines him whom he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.” It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant; later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed. Strive for peace with all men, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. See to it that no one fail to obtain the grace of God; that no “root of bitterness” spring up and cause trouble, and by it the many become defiled.

The Word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM
Psalm 103: 1 – 2, 13 – 14, 17 – 18a (R.) 17ab

R/. The mercy of the Lord is everlasting upon those who hold him in fear.

Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and all within me, his holy name.
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and never forget all his benefits. R/.

As a father has compassion on his children,
the Lord’s compassion is on those who fear him.
For he knows of what we are made;
he remembers that we are dust. R/.

But the mercy of the Lord is everlasting
upon those who hold him in fear,
upon children’s children his justice,
for those who keep his covenant. R/.

ALLELUIA
John 10: 27

Alleluia.
My sheep hear my voice, says the Lord; and I know them, and they follow me.
Alleluia.

GOSPEL
“A prophet is not without honour, except in his own country.”
MARK 6: 1 – 6

At that time: Jesus came to his own country; and his disciples followed him. And on the sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue; and many who heard him were astonished, saying, “Where did this man get all this? What is the wisdom given to him? What mighty works are wrought by his hands! Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon, and are not his sisters here with us?” And they took offence at him. And Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honour, except in his own country, and among his own kin, and in his own house.” And he could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands upon a few sick people and healed them. And he marvelled because of their unbelief. And he went about among the villages teaching.

The Gospel of the Lord.

GOSPEL REFLECTION: Christ All Around Us
February 1, 2023

“Is he not the carpenter, the son of Mary, and the brother of James and Joseph and Judas and Simon? And are not his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him. Mark 6:3

After traveling throughout the countryside performing miracles, teaching the crowds and gaining many followers, Jesus returned to Nazareth where He grew up. Perhaps His disciples were excited to return with Jesus to His native place, thinking that His own townspeople would be overjoyed to see Jesus again because of the many stories of His miracles and authoritative teaching. But the disciples were soon to have quite a surprise.

After arriving in Nazareth, Jesus entered the Synagogue to teach, and He taught with an authority and wisdom that confounded the locals. They said among themselves, “Where did this man get all this? What kind of wisdom has been given him?” They were confused because they knew Jesus. He was the local carpenter who worked for years with His father who was a carpenter. He was Mary’s son, and they knew His other relatives by name.

The primary difficulty Jesus’ townspeople had was their familiarity with Jesus. They knew Him. They knew where He lived. They knew Him as He grew up. They knew His family. They knew all about Him. Therefore, they wondered how Jesus could be anything special. How could He now teach with authority? How could He now do miracles? Thus, the townspeople were astonished, and they allowed that astonishment to turn into doubt, judgment and criticism.

The same temptation is something we all deal with more than we may realize. It is often easier to admire a stranger from afar than one whom we know well. When we hear of someone for the first time who is doing something admirable, it’s easy to join in that admiration. But when we hear good news about someone we know well, we can easily be tempted to jealousy or envy and to be skeptical and even critical. But the truth is that every saint has a family. And every family potentially has brothers and sisters, cousins and other relatives through whom God will do great things. This should not surprise us—it should inspire us! And we should rejoice when those close to us and with whom we are familiar are used powerfully by our good God.

Reflect, today, upon those whom you are familiar with in life, especially your own family. Examine whether or not you struggle with an ability to see beyond the surface and accept that God dwells within everyone. We must constantly seek to discover the presence of God all around us, especially in the lives of those whom we know very well.

PRAYER:
My ever-present Lord, thank You for the countless ways in which You are present in the lives of those all around me. Give me the grace to see You and to love You in the lives of those closest to me. As I discover Your glorious presence in their lives, fill me with deep gratitude and help me to acknowledge Your love that comes forth from their lives. Jesus, I trust in You.

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