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Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 31.01.24

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Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 31.01.24

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2ND SAMUEL 24: 2, 9 – 17

In those days: King David said to Joab and the commanders of the army, who were with him, “Go through all the tribes of Israel, from Dan to Beersheba, and number the people, that I may know the number of the people.” And Joab gave the sum of the numbering of the people to the King: in Israel there were eight hundred thousand valiant men who drew the sword, and the men of Judah were five hundred thousand. But David’s heart struck him after he had numbered the people. And David said to the Lord, “I have sinned greatly in what I have done. But now, O Lord, I pray you, take away the iniquity of your servant; for I have done very foolishly.” And when David arose in the morning, the word of the Lord came to the prophet Gad, David’s seer, saying, “Go and say to David, ‘Thus says the Lord, Three things I offer you; choose one of them, that I may do it to you. ”’ So Gad came to David and told him, and said to him, “Shall three years of famine come to you in your land? Or will you flee three months before your foes while they pursue you? Or shall there be three days’ pestilence in your land? Now consider, and decide what answer I shall return to him who sent me.” Then David said to Gad, “I am in great distress; let us fall into the hand of the Lord, for his mercy is great; but let me not fall into the hand of man.” So the Lord sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning until the appointed time; and there died of the people from Dan to Beersheba seventy thousand men. And when the angel stretched forth his hand towards Jerusalem to destroy it, the Lord repented of the evil, and said to the angel who was working destruction among the people, “It is enough; now stay your hand.” And the angel of the Lord was by the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite. Then David spoke to the Lord when he saw the angel who was striking down the people, and said, “Behold, I have sinned, and I have done wickedly; but these sheep, what have they done? Let your hand, I pray you, be against me and against my father’s house.”

The Word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM 
Psalm 32: 1 – 2, 5, 6, 7 (R.) 5a

R/. O Lord, forgive the guilt of my sin.

Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven,
whose sin is remitted.
Blessed the man to whom the Lord imputes no guilt,
in whose spirit is no guile. R/.

To you I have acknowledged my sin;
my guilt I did not hide.
I said, “I will confess my transgression to the Lord.”
And you have forgiven the guilt of my sin. R/.

So let each faithful one pray to you
in the time of need.
The floods of water may reach high,
but such a one they shall not reach. R/.

You are a hiding place for me;
you keep me safe from distress;
you surround me with cries of deliverance. R/.

GOSPEL ACCLAMATION 
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
January 31, 2024

“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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