Type to search

Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 24.06.2023

Latest Religion

Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 24.06.2023

Share

ISAIAH 49: 1 – 6

Listen to me, O Islands, and pay attention, you peoples from afar. The Lord called me from the womb, from the body of my mother he named my name. He made my mouth like a sharp sword, in the shadow of his hand he hid me; he made me a polished arrow, in his quiver he hid me away. And he said to me, “You are my servant, Israel, in whom I will be glorified.” But I said, “I have laboured in vain, I have spent my strength for nothing and vanity; yet surely my right is with the Lord, and my recompense with my God.” And now the Lord says, who formed me from the womb to be his servant, to bring Jacob back to him, and that Israel might be gathered to him, for I am honoured in the eyes of the Lord, and my God has become my strength — he says: “It is too light a thing that you should be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob and to restore the preserved of Israel; I will give you as a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth.”

The Word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM
Psalm 139: 1 – 3, 13 – 14, 15 (R.) 14a

R/. I thank you who wonderfully made me.

O Lord, you search me and you know me.
You yourself know my resting and my rising;
you discern my thoughts from afar.
You mark when I walk or lie down;
you know all my ways through and through. R/.

For it was you who formed my inmost being,
knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I thank you who wonderfully made me;
how wonderful are your works,
which my soul knows well! R/.

My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being fashioned in secret
and moulded in the depths of the earth. R/.

SECOND READING
John had preached before Christ’s coming.
ACTS 13: 22 – 26

In those days: Paul said, “God raised up David to be our fathers’ king; of whom he testified and said, ‘I have found in David, the son of Jesse, a man after my heart, who will do all my will.’ Of this man’s posterity God has brought to Israel a Saviour, Jesus, as he promised. Before his coming John had preached a baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel. And as John was finishing his course, he said, ‘What do you suppose that I am? I am not he. No, but after me one is coming, the sandals of whose feet I am not worthy to untie.’ “Brethren, sons of the family of Abraham, and those among you that fear God, to us has been sent the message of this salvation.”

The Word of the Lord.

GOSPEL ACCLAMATION
Luke1: 76

Alleluia.
You, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways.
Alleluia.

GOSPEL
“His name is John.”
LUKE 1: 57 – 66, 80

Now the time came for Elizabeth to be delivered, and she gave birth to a son. And her neighbours and kinsfolk heard that the Lord had shown great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her. And on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child; and they would have named him Zechariah after his father, but his mother said, “Not so; he shall be called John.” And they said to her, “None of your kindred is called by this name.” And they made signs to his father, inquiring what he would have him called. And he asked for a writing tablet, and wrote, “His name is John.” And they all marvelled. And immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he spoke, blessing God. And fear came on all their neighbours. And all these things were talked about through all the hill country of Judea; and all who heard them laid them up in their hearts, saying, “What then will this child be?” For the hand of the Lord was with him. And the child grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the wilderness till the day of his manifestation to Israel.

The Gospel of the Lord.
GOSPEL REFLECTION: Formed by the Hand of the Lord
Saturday, June 24, 2023

All who heard these things took them to heart, saying, “What, then, will this child be?” For surely the hand of the Lord was with him. The child grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the desert until the day of his manifestation to Israel. (Luke 1:65–66)

John the Baptist was formed by the hand of the Lord. Saint Thomas Aquinas goes so far as to say that John was sanctified in the womb of his mother, Elizabeth, as is written: “He will be filled with the holy Spirit even from his mother’s womb” (Luke 1:15). From the moment that the Blessed Virgin Mary greeted Elizabeth and John leaped for joy, the hand of the Lord was upon John, making him holy and leading him to the fulfillment of God’s holy will.

John’s early life is not recorded for us, other than in the passage quoted above. We are told that he “grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the desert until the day of his manifestation to Israel.” We should see in this passage the truth that John was not only sanctified within the womb of his mother but that, throughout his childhood and on into adulthood, he remained deeply united to God and was filled with the Holy Spirit.

Today we honor one particular aspect of John’s life—his birth. We know that he was blessed to not only be born into the blessed family of Elizabeth and Zechariah but that the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God, was also his relative and was present at his birth. Zechariah, his father, gave him the name “John” even though it would have been the custom to call him Zechariah after his father. Zechariah did this in obedience to the Archangel Gabriel, who appeared to him prior to John’s birth and instructed him to do so.

Great mystery and excitement surrounded the birth of John, and there is little doubt that those who were present at his birth would have been caught up in the intrigue and hope of who he would become. And John didn’t disappoint. It was of him that Jesus one day would say, “I tell you, among those born of women, no one is greater than John…” (Luke 7:28).

Though you may not have had the privilege of being sanctified in the womb of your mother, or to have had your father receive a revelation from the Archangel Gabriel prior to your birth, you are, nonetheless, called to be guided by the hand of the Lord each and every day. God wants you to become “strong in spirit” so that you can fulfill the unique will given to you. We honor the great saints, in part, because they give us an example of how to live. For that reason, we must see in each of their lives the model to which we must conform. The primary witness set by Saint John the Baptist is that he was unwaveringly obedient to God and to being formed by His hand. The result was the glorious fulfillment of his unique mission in life, all the way to giving his life as a martyr.

Reflect, today, upon the very real fact that, though you were not sanctified in the womb, you were sanctified by Baptism. From there, you were strengthened by the Spirit through Confirmation and are regularly fed by the Most Holy Eucharist. In many ways, you are just as blessed as John. Reflect upon the simple yet profound fact that God wants to use you for His holy mission. He gives to you some particular mission He has not entrusted to another. Say “Yes” to that mission today so that you, too, will be seen as “great” in the Kingdom of Heaven.

PRAYER:
Lord of all greatness, You sanctified Saint John the Baptist in the womb, and You continued to pour forth Your grace upon him throughout his life. He responded to You and fulfilled his glorious mission. I thank You for the sanctification given to me by my Baptism and strengthened through Confirmation and the Holy Eucharist. Help me to be open to all the graces You wish to bestow so that I may fulfill the unique mission given to me. Jesus, I trust in You.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

error

Enjoy our stories? Please spread the word: