Second Sunday in Ordinary Time w/e 1/16-1/17
We are currently celebrating the Year of the Eucharist in the Archdiocese of Boston and so it is appropriate that the Gospel which is proclaimed this weekend announces an appearance of Jesus to John and two of the disciples with an exclamation from the former of “Behold the Lamb of God”. The outcome of the willingness of Jesus to rise in the Garden of Gethsemane and profess “not my will but yours be done” is an indication that His acquiescence to the will of the Father and to the necessity of His sacrifice of His life brings with it the possibility of our unity with His sacrifice as we take and eat of His Body in the sacrifice which we celebrate on the altar. Lambs were frequently the object of sacrifice in the practice of the faith by the Israelite community and so that symbol is carried over by the Gospel to make clear that Jesus Himself is the sacrifice which clears the way for forgiveness of sins and the possibility of a return to God in eternity. Jesus is the Lamb of God as John proclaims and such a descriptive epithet makes clear that the Eucharist is no mere symbol but is the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Christ Himself. When we take and eat such we are united to the reality and truth of God’s eternal existence which we describe as grace, the communication through this relationship that God offers us so that we might know His truth. We believe that the Holy Spirit comes upon the simple gifts of bread and wine and makes them the true Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. What follows from our unity with such is that we are led out to offer sacrifice in generosity of our own lives and to make the lives of our neighbors better. Our sacrifices offered in love are motivated by our unity with the sacrifice of Christ available to us in the Eucharist.
I have received notice that there will be a retreat offered by the Archdiocese for any young man who would like to attend to consider prayerfully a vocation to the priesthood. It will be held in February at Gate of Heaven Parish in South Boston with accommodation for the weekend being offered at a Boston hotel. It is under the direction of Fathers Eric Cadin and Michael Zimmerman, the vocation Directors for the Archdiocese and all meals will be provided. My own experience of journey to the priesthood was a long and winding one, but along the way I never let the thought or the urge leave my soul. Perhaps you have been thinking about the way you could serve the Church as a priest. This retreat is one way that you could discern some of the movement of spirit and soul. If you would like to be a part of the retreat, call me at the Rectory Office (617-547-4880).
The $10,000 Drawing is fast approaching and tickets are going fast! The limit is 250 tickets to be sold so get yours now! Tickets are $100 each and it benefits our wonderful parish. Please consider taking a chance now!
Have a great week!
God Bless, Fr. Joe