Daily Mass Readings and Reflections January 12, 2023

1st Week in Ordinary Time

12th January 2023 (Thursday) Readings and Reflection

Daily Mass Readings and Reflections January 12, 2023

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Reading of the Day

First Reading: HEBREWS 3. 7-14

7.Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says, “Today, if you hear his voice, 8.do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, on the day of testing in the wilderness, 9.where your fathers put me to the test and saw my works for forty years. 10.Therefore I was provoked with that generation, and said, ‘They always go astray in their heart; they have not known my ways.’ 11.As I swore in my wrath, ‘They shall not enter my rest.’” 12.Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. 13.But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. 14.For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end.

PSALM 95: 6-7abc, 7d and 8-9, 10-11 (R. 7d, 8a)

Response: o that today you would listen to his voice! Harden not your hearts

Gospel : MARK 1. 40-45

40.And a leper came to him, imploring him, and kneeling said to him, “If you will, you can make me clean.” 41.Moved with pity, he stretched out his hand and touched him and said to him, “I will; be clean.” 42.And immediately the leprosy left him, and he was made clean. 43.And Jesusi sternly charged him and sent him away at once, 44.and said to him, “See that you say nothing to anyone, but go, show yourself to the priest and offer for your cleansing what Moses commanded, for a proof to them.” 45.But he went out and began to talk freely about it, and to spread the news, so that Jesus could no longer openly enter a town, but was out in desolate places, and people were coming to him from every quarter.

Daily Gospel Reflection

The Reflection by Fr. Thumma Mariadas Reddy MSFS{alertWarning}

Main Theme: Lord, make me clean!

Indicative: God understands our human weaknesses and so He understands our failures. But He wants us to be aware of them and approach Him for healing{alertSuccess}

1. We have a vivid picture of faithlessness, a faithless heart, and life in the first reading.   This is exemplified in the chosen people of Israel. They do not bother to know God’s ways. They grow hardened and stubborn. They become rebellious. They nurture an erring heart. They forsake God again and again. They go on testing and trying God’s patience and mercy.

2. In contrast, we have a picture of simple but profound and genuine faith in the gospel. This is seen in a leper. Oh, What humility! What an openness! What confidence! What surrender! and What a sense of mission!

3. He comes to Jesus. He kneels before him. He begs him. It is a gentle plea as he says, “If you wish”. He totally confides both in the goodness and power of the Lord, saying, “You can make me clean”.

4. Will God refuse such a humble and faithful heart? The Lord is moved with pity. He stretches out his hand. He touches the leper. He says, “I will; Be healed”. And he heals him. We detect here the solidarity of Jesus with the suffering humanity. This is seen in his respect and acceptance of the leper, considered impure and excluded from society (Lev 13. 45-46; Num 5. 2-3).

5. Any contact with lepers would also invite a general resentment and disdain with the risk of ritual impurity and ritual obligations. But Jesus is least bothered about these issues. For him what matters the most is the person and his healing. So he heals.

6. We also see Jesus’ total detachment from any self-recognition or publicity. He warns strictly the healed leper not to tell anyone anything. What a contrast with many today who eagerly and frantically seek cheap popularity and self-glory! Today the church too abounds with publicity-hunger.

7. We also see the positive effect of real healing. Once healed, the leper goes around publicising the whole matter. He shares with others what he personally experienced.

Imperative: I need to be open to the healing touch of the Lord. For this, I need to realise the need for healing. Also, I must become a sharer of God’s goodness to others{alertSuccess}


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