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Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 10.02.24

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Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 10.02.24

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1ST KINGS 12: 26 – 32; 13: 33 – 34

In those days: Jeroboam said in his heart, “Now the kingdom will turn back to the house of David; if this people go up to offer sacrifices in the house of the Lord at Jerusalem, then the heart of this people will turn again to their lord, to Rehoboam king of Judah, and they will kill me and return to Rehoboam king of Judah.” So the king took counsel, and made two calves of gold. And he said to the people, “You have gone up to Jerusalem long enough. Behold your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt. And he set one in Bethel, and the other he put in Dan. And this incident became a sin, for the people went to the one at Bethel and to the other as far as Dan. He also made houses on high places, and appointed priests from among all the people, who were not of the Levites. And Jeroboam appointed a feast on the fifteenth day of the eighth month like the feast that was in Judah, and he offered sacrifices upon the altar; so he did in Bethel, sacrificing to the calves that he had made. And he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places that he had made. After this incident Jeroboam did not turn from his evil way, but made priests for the high places again from among all the people; any who would, he consecrated to be priests of the high places. And this thing became sin to the house of Jeroboam, so as to cut it off and to destroy it from the face of the earth.

The Word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM
Psalm 106: 6 – 7ab, 19 – 20, 21 – 22 (R.) 4a

R/. O Lord, remember us with the favour you show to your people.

Like our fathers, we have sinned.
We have done wrong; our deeds have been evil.
Our forebears, when they were in Egypt,
did not grasp the meaning of your wonders. R/.

They fashioned a calf at Horeb,
and worshipped an image of metal,
they exchanged their glory
for the image of a bull that eats grass. R/.

They forgot the God who was their saviour,
who had done such great things in Egypt,
such wonders in the land of Ham,
such marvels at the Red Sea. R/.

GOSPEL ACCLAMATION
Matthew 4: 4b

Alleluia.
Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.
Alleluia.

GOSPEL
“They ate, and were satisfied.”
MARK 8: 1 – 10

In those days, when again a great crowd had gathered, and they had nothing to eat, Jesus called his disciples to him, and said to them, “I have compassion on the crowd, because they have been with me now three days, and have nothing to eat; and if I send them away hungry to their homes, they will faint on the way; and some of them have come a long way.” And his disciples answered him, “How can one feed these men with bread here in the desert?” And he asked them, “How many loaves have you?” They said, “Seven.” And he commanded the crowd to sit down on the ground; and he took the seven loaves, and having given thanks he broke them and gave them to his disciples to set before the people; and they set them before the crowd. And they had a few small fish; and having blessed them, he commanded that these also should be set before them. And they ate, and were satisfied; and they took up the broken pieces left over, seven baskets full. And there were about four thousand people. And he sent them away; and immediately he got into the boat with his disciples, and went to the district of Dalmanutha.

The Gospel of the Lord.
GOSPEL REFLECTION: First Things First
February 10, 2024

“My heart is moved with pity for the crowd, because they have been with me now for three days and have nothing to eat. If I send them away hungry to their homes, they will collapse on the way, and some of them have come a great distance.” (Mark 8:2–3)

Jesus’ primary mission was a spiritual one. He came to set us free from the effects of sin so that we could enter the glories of Heaven for all eternity. His life, death and resurrection destroyed death itself and opened the way for all who turn to Him to be saved. But Jesus’ love for the people was so complete that He was also attentive to their physical needs.

First of all, ponder the first line of this statement of our Lord above: “My heart is moved with pity for the crowd…” Jesus’ divine love was intertwined with His humanity. He loved the entire person, body and soul. In this Gospel story, the people were with Him for three days and they were hungry, but they were showing no signs of leaving. They had become so amazed by our Lord that they didn’t want to leave. Jesus pointed out that their hunger was serious. If He sent them away, He feared that they would “collapse on the way.” Thus, these facts are the basis for His miracle.

One lesson we can learn from this story is that of our priorities in life. Oftentimes, we may tend to have our priorities reversed. Of course, taking care of the necessities of life is important. We need food, shelter, clothing and the like. We need to care for our families and provide for their basic needs. But too often we elevate these basic necessities in life over our spiritual need to love and serve Christ, as if the two were opposed to each other. But that’s not the case.

In this Gospel, the people who were with Jesus chose to put their faith first. They chose to remain with Jesus despite the fact that they did not have food to eat. Perhaps some people had left a day or two earlier, deciding that the necessity of food took precedence. But those who may have done this missed out on the incredible gift of this miracle in which the entire crowd was fed to the point of being completely satisfied. Of course, our Lord does not want us to be irresponsible, especially if we have a duty to care for others. But this story does tell us that our spiritual need to be fed by the Word of God should always be our greatest concern. When we put Christ first, all other needs are met in accord with His providence.

Reflect, today, upon your own priorities in life. What’s more important to you? Your next good meal? Or your life of faith? Though these do not have to be opposed to each other, it’s important to always put your love of God first in life. Ponder this vast crowd of people who spent three days with Jesus in the wilderness without food and try to see yourself with them. Make their choice to remain with Jesus your choice also, so that your love of God becomes the primary focus of your life.

PRAYER:
My providential Lord, You know my every need and are concerned for every aspect of my life. Help me to trust You so completely that I always put my love of You as my first priority in life. I do believe that if I can keep You and Your will as the most important part of my life, all other necessities in life will fall in place. Jesus, I trust in You.

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