Weekly Bulletin w/b 23rd January. Third Sunday of Epiphany.

Almighty God, whose Son revealed in signs and miracles the wonder of your saving presence: renew your people with your heavenly grace and in all our weakness sustain us by your mighty power; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Readings at Mass

1st Reading. Nehemiah 8:1-3; 5-6; 8-10

After the Jews returned from exile in Babylon, Ezra sought to re-establish the Jewish religion. Here he reads the book of the law of Moses to the people

2nd Reading. 1 Corinthians 12:12-31

Just as the human body is an integrated whole though it is made up of many parts, so the Church, though composed of different members with different gifts, forms a unity in Christ. We are all one in him.

Gospel. St Luke 4:14-21

God’s promises are fulfilled in Jesus, the long-awaited Saviour of the poor and oppressed.

Reflection

This is ‘the Year of Luke’ when the Gospel of Luke is read during Mass each Sunday. So today we begin the consecutive reading of Luke’s Gospel, which was originally joined to Luke’s other work, the Acts of the Apostles. The way the story is told prepares us for what happens in Acts.

When the Jewish people returned home after the exile in Babylon, the nation had to be rebuilt. The Persians (who had conquered the Babylonians) entrusted this task to Ezra. Ezra brought back with him from Babylon the book of the law of Moses which he solemnly read to the assembled people who had been summoned to come together (1st Reading). The Gospel shows Jesus too proclaiming the word of God. In the synagogue at Nazareth he makes his own a passage from Isaiah, and uses it to announce a programme for his ministry. He is sent not to the wealthy and the powerful, but to the poor, the oppressed and the suffering. Here we see Luke’s concern for the marginalised and for the dispossessed. The Gospel is a Gospel of Liberation; the Good News is that the Gospel is not simply about spiritual blessings but about the building up of God’s Kingdom of peace, justice and reconciliation upon the earth.