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Catholic Caucus: Daily Mass Readings 15-January-2023
Universalis/Jerusalem Bible ^

Posted on 01/15/2023 9:01:13 AM PST by annalex

15 January 2023

2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

The Church of the Assumption of the Mother of God, Buchach, Ukraine

Readings at Mass

Liturgical Colour: Green. Year: A(I).

First readingIsaiah 49:3,5-6 ©

I will make you the light of the nations so that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth

The Lord said to me, ‘You are my servant, Israel,
in whom I shall be glorified’;
I was honoured in the eyes of the Lord,
my God was my strength.
And now the Lord has spoken,
he who formed me in the womb to be his servant,
to bring Jacob back to him,
to gather Israel to him:
‘It is not enough for you to be my servant,
to restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back the survivors of Israel;
I will make you the light of the nations
so that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.’

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 39(40):2,4,7-10 ©
Here I am, Lord! I come to do your will.
I waited, I waited for the Lord
  and he stooped down to me;
  he heard my cry.
He put a new song into my mouth,
  praise of our God.
Here I am, Lord! I come to do your will.
You do not ask for sacrifice and offerings,
  but an open ear.
You do not ask for holocaust and victim.
  Instead, here am I.
Here I am, Lord! I come to do your will.
In the scroll of the book it stands written
  that I should do your will.
My God, I delight in your law
  in the depth of my heart.
Here I am, Lord! I come to do your will.
Your justice I have proclaimed
  in the great assembly.
My lips I have not sealed;
  you know it, O Lord.
Here I am, Lord! I come to do your will.

Second reading
1 Corinthians 1:1-3 ©

May God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ send you grace and peace

I, Paul, appointed by God to be an apostle, together with brother Sosthenes, send greetings to the church of God in Corinth, to the holy people of Jesus Christ, who are called to take their place among all the saints everywhere who pray to our Lord Jesus Christ; for he is their Lord no less than ours. May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ send you grace and peace.

Gospel Acclamationcf.Lk19:38,2:14
Alleluia, alleluia!
Blessings on the King who comes,
in the name of the Lord!
Peace in heaven
and glory in the highest heavens!
Alleluia, alleluia!
The Word was made flesh and lived among us:
to all who did accept him
he gave power to become children of God.

GospelJohn 1:29-34 ©

'Look: there is the Lamb of God'

Seeing Jesus coming towards him, John said, ‘Look, there is the lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world. This is the one I spoke of when I said: A man is coming after me who ranks before me because he existed before me. I did not know him myself, and yet it was to reveal him to Israel that I came baptising with water.’ John also declared, ‘I saw the Spirit coming down on him from heaven like a dove and resting on him. I did not know him myself, but he who sent me to baptise with water had said to me, “The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and rest is the one who is going to baptise with the Holy Spirit.” Yes, I have seen and I am the witness that he is the Chosen One of God.’

Christian Art


Each day, The Christian Art website gives a picture and reflection on the Gospel of the day.

The readings on this page are from the Jerusalem Bible, which is used at Mass in most of the English-speaking world. The New American Bible readings, which are used at Mass in the United States, are available in the Universalis apps, programs and downloads.

You can also view this page with the Gospel in Greek and English.

TOPICS: Catholic; General Discusssion; Prayer; Worship
KEYWORDS: catholic; jn1; johnthebaptist; mk2; ordinarytime; prayer
For your reading, reflection, faith-sharing, comments, questions, discussion.

1 posted on 01/15/2023 9:01:13 AM PST by annalex
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To: All

KEYWORDS: catholic; jn1; ordinarytime; prayer

2 posted on 01/15/2023 9:02:30 AM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: nickcarraway; NYer; ELS; Pyro7480; livius; ArrogantBustard; Catholicguy; RobbyS; marshmallow; ...

Alleluia Ping

Please FReepmail me to get on/off the Alleluia Ping List.

3 posted on 01/15/2023 9:03:18 AM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: annalex
Jim still needs our prayers. Thread 2
Prayer thread for Salvation's recovery
Pray for Ukraine
4 posted on 01/15/2023 9:03:37 AM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: annalex
 English: Douay-RheimsLatin: Vulgata ClementinaGreek NT: Byzantine/Majority Text (2000)
 John 1
29The next day, John saw Jesus coming to him, and he saith: Behold the Lamb of God, behold him who taketh away the sin of the world. Altera die vidit Joannes Jesum venientem ad se, et ait : Ecce agnus Dei, ecce qui tollit peccatum mundi.τη επαυριον βλεπει [ο ιωαννης] τον ιησουν ερχομενον προς αυτον και λεγει ιδε ο αμνος του θεου ο αιρων την αμαρτιαν του κοσμου
30This is he, of whom I said: After me there cometh a man, who is preferred before me: because he was before me. Hic est de quo dixi : Post me venit vir qui ante me factus est : quia prior me erat :ουτος εστιν περι ου εγω ειπον οπισω μου ερχεται ανηρ ος εμπροσθεν μου γεγονεν οτι πρωτος μου ην
31And I knew him not, but that he may be made manifest in Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water. et ego nesciebam eum, sed ut manifestetur in Israël, propterea veni ego in aqua baptizans.καγω ουκ ηδειν αυτον αλλ ινα φανερωθη τω ισραηλ δια τουτο ηλθον εγω εν τω υδατι βαπτιζων
32And John gave testimony, saying: I saw the Spirit coming down, as a dove from heaven, and he remained upon him. Et testimonium perhibuit Joannes, dicens : Quia vidi Spiritum descendentem quasi columbam de cælo, et mansit super eum.και εμαρτυρησεν ιωαννης λεγων οτι τεθεαμαι το πνευμα καταβαινον ωσει περιστεραν εξ ουρανου και εμεινεν επ αυτον
33And I knew him not; but he who sent me to baptize with water, said to me: He upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining upon him, he it is that baptizeth with the Holy Ghost. Et ego nesciebam eum : sed qui misit me baptizare in aqua, ille mihi dixit : Super quem videris Spiritum descendentem, et manentem super eum, hic est qui baptizat in Spiritu Sancto.καγω ουκ ηδειν αυτον αλλ ο πεμψας με βαπτιζειν εν υδατι εκεινος μοι ειπεν εφ ον αν ιδης το πνευμα καταβαινον και μενον επ αυτον ουτος εστιν ο βαπτιζων εν πνευματι αγιω
34And I saw, and I gave testimony, that this is the Son of God. Et ego vidi : et testimonium perhibui quia hic est Filius Dei.καγω εωρακα και μεμαρτυρηκα οτι ουτος εστιν ο υιος του θεου

5 posted on 01/15/2023 9:05:57 AM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: annalex

Catena Aurea by St. Thomas Aguinas


29. The next day John seeth Jesus coming to him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.

30. This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me.

31. And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.

ORIGEN. (tom. vi. c. 30) After this testimony, Jesus is seen coming to John, not only persevering in his confession, but also advanced in goodness: as is intimated by the second day. Wherefore it is said, The next day John seeth Jesus coming to him. Long before this, the Mother of Jesus, as soon as she had conceived Him, went to see the mother of John then pregnant; and as soon as the sound of Mary’s salutation reached the ears of Elisabeth, John leaped in the womb: but now the Baptist himself after his testimony seeth Jesus coming. Men are first prepared by hearing from others, and then see with their own eyes. The example of Mary going to see Elisabeth her inferior, and the Son of God going to see the Baptist, should teach us modesty and fervent charity to our inferiors. What place the Saviour came from when He came to the Baptist we are not told here; but we find it in Matthew, Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John to be baptized of him. (Matt. 3:13)

CHRYSOSTOM. (Hom. xvii. [al. xvi.]) Or; Matthew relates directly Christ’s coming to His baptism, John His coming a second time subsequent to His baptism, as appears from what follows: I saw the Spirit descending, &c. The Evangelists have divided the periods of the history between them; Matthew passing over the part before John’s imprisonment, and hastening to that event; John chiefly dwelling on what took place before the imprisonment. Thus he says, The next day John seeth Jesus coming to him. But why did He come to him the next day after His baptism? Having been baptized with the multitude, He wished to prevent any from thinking that He came to John for the same reason that others did, viz. to confess His sins, and be washed in the river unto repentance. He comes therefore to give John an opportunity of correcting this mistake; which John accordingly did correct; viz. by those words, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. For He Who was so pure, as to be able to absolve other men’s sins, evidently could not have come thither for the sake of confessing His own; but only to give John an opportunity of speaking of Him. He came too the next day, that those who had heard the former testimonies of John, might hear them again more plainly; and other besides. For he saith, Behold the Lamb of God, signifying that He was the one of old sought after, and reminding them of the prophecy of Isaiah, and of the shadows of the Mosaic law, in order that through the figure he might the easier lead them to the substance.

AUGUSTINE. (Tr. iv. c. 10) If the Lamb of God is innocent, and John is the lamb, must he not be innocent? But all men come of that stock of which David sings sorrowing, Behold, I was conceived in wickedness. (Ps. 51:5) He then alone was the Lamb, who was not thus conceived; for He was not conceived in wickedness, nor in sin did His mother bear Him in her womb, Whom a virgin conceived, a virgin brought forth, because that in faith she conceived, and in faith received.

ORIGEN. (tom. vi. c. 32. et seq.) But whereas five kinds of animals are offered in the temple, three beasts of the field, a calf, a sheep, and a goat; and two fowls of the air, a turtle dove and a pigeon; and of the sheep kind three are introduced, the ram, the ewe, the lamb; of these three he mentions only the lamb; the lamb, as we know, being offered in the daily sacrifice, one in the morning, and one in the evening. But what other daily offering can there be, that can be meant to be offered by a reasonable nature, except the perfect Word, typically called the Lamb? This sacrifice, which is offered up as soon as the soul begins to be enlightened, shall be accounted as a morning sacrifice, referring to the frequent exercise of the mind in divine things; for the soul cannot continually apply to the highest objects because of its union with an earthly and gross body. By this Word too, Which is Christ the Lamb, we shall be able to reason on many things, and shall in a manner attain to Him in the evening, while engaged with things of the bodyt. But He Who offered the lamb for a sacrifice, was God hid in human form, the great Priest, He who saith below, No man taketh it (My life) from Me, but I lay it down of Myself: (John 10:18) whence this name, the Lamb of God: for He carrying our sorrows, (Isaiah 53:4. 1 Pet. 2:24.) and taking away the sins of the whole world, hath undergone death, as it were baptism. (Luke 12:50.) For God suffers no fault to pass uncorrected; but punishes it by the sharpest discipline.

THEOPHYLACT. (in loc.) He is called the Lamb of God, because God the Father accepted His death for our salvation, or, in other words, because He delivered Him up to death for our sakes. For just as we say, This is the offering of such a man, meaning the offering made by him; in the same sense Christ is called the Lamb of God Who gave His Son to die for our salvation. And whereas that typical lamb did not take away any man’s sin, this one hath taken away the sin of the whole world, rescuing it from the danger it was in from the wrath of God. Behold Him1 Who taketh away the sin of the world: he saith not, who will take, but, Who taketh away the sin of the world; as if He were always doing this. For He did not then only take it away when He suffered, but from that time to the present, He taketh it away; not by being always crucified, for He made one sacrifice for sins, but by ever washing it by means of that sacrifice.

GREGORY. (Moral. viii. c. 32) But then only will sin be entirely taken away from the human race, when our corruption has been turned to a glorious incorruption. We cannot be free from sin, so long as we are held in the death of the body.

THEOPHYLACT. (in loc.) Why does he say the sin of the world, not sins? Because he wished to express sin universally: just as we say commonly, that man was cast out of paradise; meaning the whole human race.

GLOSS. Or by the sin of the world is meant original sin, which is common to the whole world: which original sin, as well as the sins of every one individually, Christ by His grace remits.

AUGUSTINE. (Tr. iv. c. 10, 11) For He Who took not sin from our nature, He it is Who taketh away our sin. Some say, We take away the sins of men, because we are holy; for if he, who baptizes, is not holy, how can he take away the other’s sin, seeing he himself is full of sin? Against these reasoners let us point to the text; Behold Him Who taketh away the sin of the world; in order to do away with such presumption in man towards man.

ORIGEN. (tom. vi. c. 36) As there was a connexion between the other sacrifices of the law, and the daily sacrifice of the lamb, in the same way the sacrifice of this Lamb has its reflexion in the pouring out of the blood of the Martyrs, by whose patience, confession, and zeal for goodness, the machinations of the ungodly are frustrated.

THEOPHYLACT. (in loc.) John having said above to those who came from the Pharisees, that there stood one among them whom they knew not, he here points Him out to the persons thus ignorant: This is He of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me. Our Lord is called a man, in reference to His mature age, being thirty years old when He was baptized: or in a spiritual sense, as the Spouse of the Church; in which sense St. Paul speaks, I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. (2 Cor. 11:2)

AUGUSTINE. (Tr. iv) He cometh after me, because he was born after me: He is made before me, because He is preferred to me.

GREGORY. (Hom. vii. in Ev. c. 3) He explains the reason of this superiority, in what follows: For He was before me; as if his meaning was; And this is the reason of His being superior to me, though born after me, viz. that He is not circumscribed by the time of His nativity. He Who was born of His mother in time, was begotten of His Father out of time.

THEOPHYLACT. (in loc.) Attend, O Arius. He saith not, He was created before me, but He was before me. Let the false sect of Paul of Samosata attend. They will see that He did not derive His original existence from Mary; for if He derived the beginning of His being from the Virgin, how could He have been before His precursor? it being evident that the precursor preceded Christ by six months, according to the human birth.

CHRYSOSTOM. (Hom. xvii. [al. xvi.] 2) That He might not seem however to give His testimony from any motive of friendship or kindred, in consequence of his being related to our Lord according to the flesh, he says, I knew Him not. John could not of course know Him, having lived in the desert. And the miraculous events of Christ’s childhood, the journey of the Magi, and such like, were now a long time past; John having been quite an infant, when they happened. And throughout the whole of the interval, He had been absolutely unknown: insomuch that John proceeds, But that He should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water. (And hence it is clear that the miracles said to have been performed by Christ in His childhood, are false and fictitious. For if Jesus had performed miracles at this early age, he would not have been unknown to John, nor would the multitude have wanted a teacher to point Him out.) Christ Himself then did not want baptism; nor was that washing for any other reason, than to give a sign beforehand of faith in Christ. For John saith not, in order to change men, and deliver from sin, but, that he should be made manifest in Israel, have I come baptizing. But would it not have been lawful for him to preach, and bring crowds together, without baptizing? Yes: but this was the easier way, for he would not have collected such numbers, had he preached without baptizing.

AUGUSTINE. (Tr. iv. c. 12, 13) Now when our Lord became known, it was unnecessary to prepare a way for Him; for to those who knew Him, He became His own way. And therefore John’s baptism did not last long, but only so long as to shew our Lord’s humility. (Tr. v. c. 5.). Our Lord received baptism from a servant, in order to give us such a lesson of humility as might prepare us for receiving the grace of baptism. And that the servant’s baptism might not be set before the Lord’s, others were baptized with it; who after receiving it, had to receive our Lord’s baptism: whereas those who first received our Lord’s baptism, did not receive the servant’s after.


32. And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.

33. And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.

34. And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.

CHRYSOSTOM. (Hom. xvii. [al. xvi.] 2) John having made a declaration, so astonishing to all his hearers, viz. that He, whom he pointed out, did of Himself take away the sins of the world, confirms it by a reference to the Father and the Holy Spirit. For John might be asked, how did you know Him? Wherefore he replies beforehand, by the descent of the Holy Spirit: And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.

AUGUSTINE. (de Trin. xv. c. 46. [26.]) This was not however the first occasion of Christ’s receiving the unction of the Holy Spirit: viz. Its descent upon Him at His baptism; wherein He condescended to prefigure His body, the Church, wherein those who are baptized receive preeminently the Holy Spirit. For it would be absurd to suppose that at thirty years old, (which was His age, when He was baptized by John,) He received for the first time the Holy Spirit: and that, when He came to that baptism, as He was without sin, so was He without the Holy Spirit. For if even of His servant and forerunner John it is written, He shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from His mother’s womb; if He, though sprung from His father’s seed, yet received the Holy Ghost, when as yet He was only formed in the womb; what ought we to think and believe of Christ, whose very flesh had not a carnal but spiritual conception?

AUGUSTINE. (de Agon. Christiano, c. 24. [22.]) We do not attribute to Christ only the possession of a real body, and say that the Holy Spirit assumed a false appearance to men’s eyes: for the Holy Spirit could no more, in consistency with His nature, deceive men, than could the Son of God. The Almighty God, Who made every creature out of nothing, could as easily form a real body of a dove, without the instrumentality of other doves, as He made a real body in the womb of the Virgin, without the seed of the male.

AUGUSTINE. (in Joan. Tr. vi. sparsim) The Holy Ghost was made to appear visibly in two ways: as a dove, upon our Lord at His baptism; and as a flame upon His disciples, when they were met together: the former shape denoting simplicity, the latter fervency. The dove intimates that souls sanctified by the Spirit should have no guile; the fire, that in that simplicity there should not be coldness. Nor let it disturb thee, that the tongues are cloven; fear no division; unity is assured to us in the dove. It was meet then that the Holy Spirit should be thus manifested descending upon our Lord; in order that every one who had the Spirit might know, that he ought to be simple as a dove, and be in sincere peace with the brethren. The kisses of doves represent this peace. Ravens kiss, but they tear also; but the nature of the dove is most alien to tearing. Ravens feed on the dead, but the dove eats nothing but the fruits of the earth. If doves moan in their love, marvel not that He Who appeared in the likeness of a dove, the Holy Spirit, maketh intercession for us with groanings that cannot be uttered. (Rom. 8:26) The Holy Spirit however groaneth not in Himself, but in us: He maketh us to groan. And he who groaneth, as knowing that, so long as He is under the burden of this mortality, he is absent from the Lord, groaneth well: it is the Spirit that hath taught him to groan. But many groan because of earthly calamities; because of losses which disquiet them, or bodily sickness which weigh heavily on them: they groan not, as doth the dove. What then could more fitly represent the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of unity, than the dove? as He saith Himself to His reconciled Church, My dove is one. (Cant. 6:9) What could better express humility, than the simplicity and moaning of a dove? Wherefore on this occasion it was that there appeared the very most Holy Trinity, the Father in the voice which said, Thou art My beloved Son; the Holy Spirit in the likeness of the dove. (Matt. 28:19) In that Trinity the Apostles were sent to baptize, i. e. in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.

GREGORY. (Moral. liv. [90.]) He saith, Abode upon Him: for the Holy Spirit visits all the faithful; but on the Mediator alone does He abide for ever in a peculiar manner; never leaving the Son’s Humanity, even as Ho proceeds Himself from the Son’s Divinity. But when the disciples are told of the same Spirit, (John 14:17.) He shall dwell with you, how is the abiding of the Spirit a peculiar sign of Christ? This will appear if we distinguish between the different gifts of the Spirit. As regards those gifts which are necessary for attaining to life, the Holy Spirit ever abides in all the elect; such are gentleness, humility, faith, hope, charity: but with respect to those, which have for their object, not our own salvation, but that of others, he does not always abide, but sometimes withdraws, and ceases to exhibit them; that men may be more humble in the possession of His gifts. But Christ had all the gifts of the Spirit, uninterruptedly always.

CHRYSOSTOM. (Hom. xvii [al. xvi.] 2. in Joan.) Should any however think that Christ really wanted the Holy Spirit, in the way that we do, he corrects this notion also, by informing us that the descent of the Holy Ghost took place only for the purpose of manifesting Christ: And I knew Him not: but He that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, the same is He which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.

AUGUSTINE. (Aug. Tr. v. c. i) But who sent John? If we say the Father, we say true; if we say the Son, we say true. But it would be truer to say, the Father and the Son. How then knew he not Him, by Whom he was sent? For if he knew not Him, by Whom he wished to be baptized, it was rash in him to say, I have need to be baptized by Thee. So then he knew Him; and why saith he, I knew Him not?

CHRYSOSTOM. (Hom. xvii. [al. xvi.] c. 3. in Joan.) When he saith, I knew Him not, he is speaking of time past, not of the time of his baptism, when he forbad Him, saying, I have need to be baptized of Thee.

AUGUSTINE. (Aug. Tr. iv.v. and vi. sparsim.) Let us turn to the other Evangelists, who relate the matter more clearly, and we shall find most satisfactorily, that the dove descended when our Lord ascended from the water. If then the dove descended after baptism, but John said before the baptism, I have need to be baptized of Thee, he knew Him before His baptism also. How then said he, I knew him not, but He which sent me to baptize? Was this the first revelation made to John of Christ’s person, or was it not rather a fuller disclosure of what had been already revealed? John knew the Lord to be the Son of God, knew that He would baptize with the Holy Ghost: for before Christ came to the river, many having come together to hear John, he said unto them, He that cometh after me is mightier than I: He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire. (Matt. 3:11) What then? He did not know that our Lord (lest Paul or Peter might say, my baptism, as we find Paul did say, my Gospel,) would have and retain to Himself the power of baptism, the ministering of it however passing to good and bad indiscriminately. What hindrance is the badness of the minister, when the Lord is good? So then we baptize again after John’s baptism; after a homicide’s we baptize not: because John gave his own baptism, the homicide gives Christ’s; which is so holy a sacrament, that not even a homicide’s ministration can pollute it. Our Lord could, had He so willed, have given power to any servant of His to give baptism as it were in His own stead; and to the baptism, thus transferred to the servant, have imparted the same power, that it would have had, when given by Himself. But this He did not choose to do; that the hope of the baptized might be directed to Him, Who had baptized them; He wished not the servant to place hope in the servant. And again, had He given this power to servants, there would have been as many baptisms as servants; as there had been the baptism of John, so should we have had the baptism of Paul and of Peter. It is by this power then, which Christ retains in His own possession exclusively, that the unity of the Church is established; of which it is said, My dove is one. (Cant. 6:9) A man may have a baptism besides the dove; but that any besides the dove should profit, is impossible.

CHRYSOSTOM. (Hom. xvii. [al. xvi.] 3) The Father having sent forth a voice proclaiming the Son, the Holy Spirit came besides, bringing the voice upon the head of Christ, in order that no one present might think that what was said of Christ, was said of John. But it will be asked: How was it that the Jews believed not, if they saw the Spirit? Such sights however require the mental vision, rather than the bodily. If those who saw Christ working miracles were so drunken with malice, that they denied what their own eyes had seen, how could the appearance of the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove overcome their incredulity? Some say however that the sight was not visible to all, but only to John, and the more devotional part. But even if the descent of the Spirit, as a dove, was visible to the outward eye, it does not follow that because all saw it, all understood it. Zacharias himself, Daniel, Ezechiel, and Moses saw many things, appearing to their senses, which no one else saw: and therefore John adds, And I saw and bare record that this is the Son of God. He had called Him the Lamb before, and said that He would baptize with the Spirit; but he had no where called Him the Son before.

AUGUSTINE. (Tr. vii. in Joan) It was necessary that the Only Son of God should baptize, not an adopted son. Adopted sons are ministers of the Only Son: but though they have the ministration, the Only one alone has the power.

Catena Aurea John 1

6 posted on 01/15/2023 9:06:43 AM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: annalex

Baptism of Christ

Giotto di Bondone

Fresco, 200 x 185 cm
Cappella Scrovegni (Arena Chapel), Padua

7 posted on 01/15/2023 9:09:58 AM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: annalex

Saint of the week: St Ita (January 15)

Known as the “foster mother of the saints of Erin”, Íte ingen Chinn Fhalad is believed to have been born in 480AD at a time when Ireland had just recently been Christianised.

She was raised in Drum, Co Waterford. Some genealogies claim she was a cousin to Ireland’s patron, St Bridget, although in a period of sparse knowledge we cannot know for certain.

Ita is regarded as the embodiment of the six virtues of Irish womanhood – wisdom, purity, musical ability, gentle speech and needle skills. She turned down a good marriage offer to live as a consecrated Religious and at the age of 16 moved to what is now Killeedy in Co Limerick, founding a small community of nuns. According to legend, Ita was led there by three heavenly lights. Turning down the offer of a large plot of land from a local king, she focused on prayer, fasting and teaching. Among her pupils was St Brendan the Navigator, who is said to have visited her in between his various risky trips to far-flung parts of the world.

A popular spiritual director, Ita played a major role in the early Irish Church, at a time when the Celtic Church was more advanced than its neighbours and much of Britain had reverted to paganism.

St Ita died around 570, at a greatly advanced age, and perhaps her longevity was connected to her reputation for austerity. Her grave in Killeedy was, alas, destroyed by the Vikings, but remains a popular spot for pilgrims. It features a now dried-up holy well supposed to have been capable of curing
8 posted on 01/15/2023 9:19:39 AM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: annalex

9 posted on 01/15/2023 9:22:26 AM PST by annalex (fear them not)
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To: annalex

Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam (To the Greater Glory of God)

From: Isaiah 49:3, 5-6

Second Song of the Servant of the Lord
[3] And he said to me, “You are my servant, Israel, in whom I will be glorified."

[5] 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 honored in the eyes of the LORD, and my God has become my strength--[6] 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."


49:1-55:13. Chapter 49 marks the start of the second section of the second part of Isaiah. The first section (40:1-48:22) dealt with the release of the Jews from exile in Babylon on the orders of the Lord, the ruler of the world and of all nations. This second section sings of the restoration of Zion and the renewal of the people.

Almost all the oracles here presuppose that Babylon has fallen and the exiles have returned home (although neither event is explicitly referred to). Nor is there mention of the universal scope of salvation: the focus is mainly on future hopes and on Jerusalem.

Most of the oracles in this section were probably proclaimed, between the years 515 and 500 BC. If that was the case, then they were addressed to a disillusioned people: the enthusiasm that came with the return from exile and the efforts made to rebuild Jerusalem failed to produce the desired results: there are still class differences, greed is plain to see, and huge sectors of society are experiencing poverty. The kind of Jerusalem that the exiles dreamed of had not come about: it bore no relationship to what they were experiencing; nor did it fit the image of Jerusalem found in many texts of the Priestly tradition (cf. “Introduction to the Pentateuch”, in "The Navarre Bible: Pentateuch" (p. 20). These oracles are designed to dispel discouragement and to raise people’s hopes by telling them about the liberator that God is going to send, the servant of the Lord, and by proclaiming that the holy city (now given the sacred name of Zion) will very soon be restored. In fact, the section can be divided into alternating poems on the servant and on Zion: 49:1-13, the "servant" (second oracle); 49:14-50:3, "Zion"; 50:4-11, the "servant", (third oracle and exhortation); 51:17-52:12, Zion; 52:13-53:12, the "servant" (fourth oracle); 54:1-17, "Zion" (Jerusalem). Verses 1-13 of chapter 55 are an exhortation to commit oneself to the new Covenant.

49:1-6. In the first Song of the Servant of the Lord (42:1-9) we meet the “servant” for the first time and we are told of his mission to liberate the exiles. In this second song, the servant himself speaks. He addresses the “coastlands”, “peoples from afar”, and he is conscious of having been chosen by God from his mother’s womb to carry out God’s plans of salvation even in those distant parts (cf. vv. 1-3). Here we are told about two aspects of his mission, which we will hear more about in the oracles that follow. First, he is to play a leading role in the recovery of the tribes and the repatriation of the exiles (v. 5); second, he will extend salvation to the ends of the earth (cf. v. 6).

This poem contains, things that the servant has to say about himself (vv. 1-4), and things that God says about the servant (vv. 5-6). The servant is well aware that he was called by God, even from his mother’s womb, (like Jeremiah; cf. Jer 1:5) and has been charged with preaching to the pagan peoples (“the coastlands”) or at least to his compatriots in the diaspora (cf. v. 1; cf. Jer 1:1-10; 25:13-38); he has been endowed with qualities that enable him to speak out, with words that find their mark like arrows, even if that creates divisions (v. 2; cf. Jer 1:10); and also, despite the divine protection given him, he feels depressed and disappointed, as happened to Jeremiah (vv. 3-4; cf. Jer 1:7; :8:18-20). Everything that the servant does is grounded on what the Lord has told him: “You are my servant, Israel” (v. 3). Some commentators are of the view that “Israel” here is a later interpretation, put in to support the collectivist interpretation of the servant that soon became widespread; but there is little evidence to support that: the word “Israel” is missing only in one manuscript, and not an important one at that. The mention of Israel does not argue against the servant’s being an individual rather than a collectivity, for in poetry a person can be addressed by his own name or by his family name. In fact, both in biblical Israel and nowadays we often find people using their place of birth as a surname.

In vv. 5-6 the Lord spells out the servant’s mission: it is to renew the people in such a way that even non-Israelites can see the light and attain salvation. Although the universal mission of the servant is not clearly defined here, for his work is meant to be confined to the tribes of Jacob, still the achievement of this objective (the re-assembling of Israel) will be a kind of light to help the pagan nations see and acknowledge God. The expression “light to the nations”. (v. 6) already occurred in the earlier poem (42:6); there it could be taken in a social sense--to bring about the liberation of the exiles and captives; here, the religious meaning is clear: salvation will spread to all the nations.

To sum up, the servant of the Lord (be he an individual or a collectivity, or more likely both) has been chosen by God, who loves him most specially; he has all the main qualities of a prophet; and he must influence his compatriots so as to enlighten those from outside, and bring them salvation.

The messianic interpretation of the servant figure, based on this second song, was widespread among the Jews of Alexandria who made the Septuagint Greek translation; it was also held by members of the Qumran community and by some authors of the period between the Old and New Testaments (the author of the "Book of Enoch", for example). All these interpreted the servant as standing for the entire people of Israel. Christians, from the beginning, applied the songs of the servant to Jesus, and saw them as finding fulfillment in his life. Thus, although the image of the “sharp sword” (v. 2) refers to the effectiveness of the word of God, in Hebrews 4:12-13 we find it used with reference to Revelation as a whole which is fully and perfectly manifested in Jesus Christ (cf. also Rev 1:16 and 2:12). We find the expression, “light to the nations” or “light to the peoples” being applied by Simeon to Jesus (Lk 2:32). Indeed, in the Acts of the Apostles it is applied to those who, in line with Jesus’ teaching and as cooperators in his work of salvation, are setting out to preach to the Gentiles, as the words Paul and Barnabas speak in the synagogue of Psidian Antioch testify: “It was necessary that the word of God should be spoken first to you. Since you thrust it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of eternal life, behold, we turn to the Gentiles. For so the Lord has commanded us, saying, ‘I have set you to be a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the uttermost parts of the earth” (Acts 13:46-47). Hence the Church sees her mission as spreading the truth about Jesus, the light that enlightens everyone: “The light, of God’s face shines in all its beauty on the countenance of Jesus Christ, ‘the image of the invisible God’ (Col 1:15), the ‘reflection of God’s glory’ (Heb 1:3), ‘full of grace and truth’ (Jn 1:14). Christ is ‘the way, and the truth, and the life’ (Jn 14:6). [...] Jesus Christ, the ‘light of the nations’, shines: upon the face of his Church, which he sends forth to the whole world to proclaim the Gospel to every creature (cf. Mk 16:15). Hence the Church, as the people of God among the nations, while attentive to the new challenges of history and to mankind’s efforts to discover the meaning of life, offers to everyone the answer which comes from the truth about Jesus Christ and his Gospel” (John Paul II, "Veritatis Splendor", 2).

10 posted on 01/15/2023 11:06:08 AM PST by fidelis (👈 Under no obligation to respond to rude, ignorant, abusive, bellicose, and obnoxious posts.)
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To: fidelis
From: 1 Corinthians 1:1-3

[1] Paul, called by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, and our brother Sosthenes,

[2] To the church of God which is at Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints together with all those who in every place call on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, both their Lord and ours:

[3] Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.


1-9. With slight variations almost all St Paul's letters begin in the same kind of way: there is a greeting (vv. 1-3), which carries the name of the writer, information on the addressee(s), and the conventional phrase; and an act of thanksgiving to God (vv. 4-9), in which the Apostle refers to the main qualities and endowments of the Christians to whom he is writing. By comparing his letters with other letters that have come down to us from the same period, it is quite apparent that St Paul usually begins his letters in the style of the time. yet he does not entirely follow this rigid pattern: he changes the usual opening--"Greeting!" (cf. Acts 15:23; 23:26)--to this more personal one, which has a pronounced Christian stamp: "Grace to you and peace." Also, the way in which he introduces himself and describes those he is addressing tells much more than a simple "Paul to the Corinthians: greeting!" Even his words of thanksgiving convey tenderness and warmth--and their tone is not merely human, for he attributes to God the virtues he praises in the faithful.

The Fathers of the Church have drawn attention to this characteristic of Paul's letters--the way he manages to convey a deep doctrinal message in a familiar style, nicely suited to whomever he happens to be addressing: "A doctor", St John Chrysostom explains, "does not treat the patient in the same way at the start of his illness as when he is recovering; nor does a teacher use the same method with children as with those who need more advanced tuition. That is how the Apostle acts: he writes as suits the needs and the times" ("Hom. On Rom", Prologue).

1. St Paul attaches to his name three features which identify him—his divine calling; his office as Apostle of Jesus Christ; and the will of God, the source of his apostolic vocation.

"Called": this is a carefully chosen word designed to convey the vigorous and personal way God called him. He calls all men to faith, to grace, to holiness, and to heaven (cf., e.g. Rom 1:7; 1 Cor 1:2; 1:26; 7:20; Eph 1:18). By defining himself as "called" (cf. Rom 1:1), St Paul is very probably referring to the episode on the road to Damascus (cf. Acts 9:1-19), when Christ changed his life, as he had earlier changed the lives of the Twelve.

"Apostle of Christ Jesus": Paul can find no stronger expression than this to describe his mission: he is forever applying this title to himself--thirty-five times by our reckoning. This fact of his apostleship is the basis of his authority--authority to praise, teach, admonish and correct orally and in writing. He is so totally identified with this mission that he has no other purpose than to pursue it; his life is dedicated to this end; all his thoughts, words and actions are aimed at achieving it. Humbly (because he once persecuted the Church: 1 Cor 15:9) and yet forthrightly (cf. 1 Cor 9:1-2) he puts himself on the same level as the Twelve as far as vocation and apostleship are concerned.

"By the will of God": the Apostle's energy and vitality are ascribable not to himself but to God, who had plans for Paul ever since he was in his mother's womb (Gal 1: 15); so much so that later in this letter he actually says, "If I preach the Gospel, that gives me no ground for boasting. For necessity is laid upon me. Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel" (1 Cor 9:16).

"Our brother, Sosthenes": it is uncertain whether this was the same person as the ruler of the synagogue in Corinth mentioned in Acts (18:17). The prominent position given him here suggests that he was someone well-known to the community at Corinth, either for his ministry among them or because he often accompanied St Paul; he may have been the secretary, or scribe, who actually wrote the letter down (cf. 16:21).

2. "The church of God at Corinth": the addressee of the letter. The very grammar of the phrase emphasizes the fact that the Church is not the totality of the local communities: rather, each local community--here, the Christians of Corinth--represents the whole Church, which is one and indivisible: "The Apostle calls it [the community] 'the church of God' in order to show that unity is one of its essential and necessary characteristics. The Church of God is one in its members and forms nothing but a single Church with all the communities spread throughout the world, for the word 'church' does not mean schism: it means unity, harmony, concord" (St John Chrysostom, "Hom on 1 Cor", 1, "ad loc".).

In another three brush-strokes St Paul here describes those who make up the Church--those sanctified in Jesus Christ, those called to be saints, those who invoke the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

"Those sanctified in Christ Jesus": the faithful receive at Baptism the grace which makes them a holy people (cf. Ex 19:6; 1 Pet 2:9); the participle "sanctified" implies something stable, such as is the intimate union between the individual Christian and Jesus. The formula "in Christ Jesus" here refers to the fact that the baptized are grafted on to Christ like branches attached to a wine (cf. Jn l5:1ff); this link with Christ is what makes them saints, that is, sharers in God's own holiness; and it involves a duty to strive for moral perfection. "As those who profess any art, even though they depart from its rules, are still called artists, so in like manner the faithful, although offending in many things and violating the engagements to which they had pledged themselves, are still called holy, because they have been made the people of God and have consecrated themselves to Christ by faith and Baptism. Hence, St Paul calls the Corinthians sanctified and holy, although it is certain that among them there were some whom he severely rebuked as carnal, and charged with grosser crimes" ("St Pius V Catechism", I, 10, 15).

"Called to be saints": through faith and Baptism "all Christians in any state or walk of life are called to the fullness of Christian life and to the perfection of love" (Vatican II, "Lumen Gentium", 40).

"Those who in every place call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ": this circumlocution describes Christian believers (cf. Acts 9:14, 21; 22:16; Rom 10:12); what makes them different from others is that they worship Jesus Christ as Lord and God, in the same way as the faithful of the Old Covenant invoked the name of Yahweh. To be a member of the Church of God, therefore, it is essential that a person believe that Christ is God. "We believe in our Lord Jesus Christ, who is the Son of God. He is the eternal Word of the Father before time began, one in substance with the Father, "homoousios to Patri", through whom all things were made. He was incarnate of the Virgin Mary by the power of the Holy Spirit and was made man. 'Equal, therefore, to the Father according to his divinity, less than the Father according to his humanity, his unity deriving not from some impossible confusion of substance but from his Person"' (Paul Vl, "Creed of the People of God", 11).

3. Peace of soul, that "serenity of mind, tranquillity of soul, simplicity of heart, bond of love, union of charity" of which St Augustine spoke ("De Verb. Dom. Serm.", 58), originates in the friendship with God which grace brings with it; it is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit (cf. Gal 5:22-23). This is the only true kind of peace: "There is no true peace, just as there is no true grace, other than the grace and peace which come from God," St John Chrysostom teaches, "Possess this divine peace and you will have nothing to fear, even if you be threatened by the direct danger, whether from men or even from the demons themselves; whereas see how everything is a cause of fear for the man who is at war with God through sin" ("Hom. on 1 Cor", 1, "ad loc".).

11 posted on 01/15/2023 11:07:25 AM PST by fidelis (👈 Under no obligation to respond to rude, ignorant, abusive, bellicose, and obnoxious posts.)
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To: fidelis
From: John 1:29-34

The Witness of John (Continuation)
[29] The next day he (John the Baptist) saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, "Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! [30] This is He of whom I said, `After me comes a man who ranks before me, for He was before me.' [31] I myself did not know Him; but for this I came baptizing with water, that He might be revealed to Israel." [32] And John bore witness, "I saw the Spirit descend as a dove from Heaven, and it remained on Him. [33] I myself did not know Him; but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, `He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.' [34] And I have seen and borne witness that this is the Son of God."


29. For the first time in the Gospel Christ is called the "Lamb of God". Isaiah had compared the sufferings of the Servant of Yahweh, the Messiah, with the sacrifice of a lamb (cf. Isaiah 53:7); and the blood of the paschal lamb smeared on the door of houses had served to protect the firstborn of the Israelites in Egypt (cf. Exodus 12:6-7): all this was a promise and prefiguring of the true Lamb, Christ, the victim in the sacrifice of Calvary on behalf of all mankind. This is why St. Paul will say that "Christ, our Paschal Lamb, has been sacrificed" (1 Corinthians 5:7). The expression "Lamb of God" also suggests the spotless innocence of the Redeemer (cf. 1 Peter 1:18-20; 1 John 3:5).

The sacred text says "the sin of the world", in the singular, to make it absolutely clear that every kind of sin is taken away: Christ came to free us from Original Sin, which in Adam affected all men, and from all personal sins.

The Book of Revelation reveals to us that Jesus is victorious and glorious in Heaven as the slain lamb (cf. Revelation 5:6-14), surrounded by saints, martyrs and virgins (Revelation 7:9, 14; 14:1-5), who render Him the praise and glory due Him as God (Revelation 7:10).

Since Holy Communion is a sharing in the sacrifice of Christ, priests say these words of the Baptist before administering it, to encourage the faithful to be grateful to our Lord for giving Himself up to death to save us and for giving Himself to us as nourishment for our souls.

30-31. John the Baptist here asserts Jesus' superiority by saying that He existed before him, even though He was born after him. Thereby he shows us the divinity of Christ, who was generated by the Father from all eternity and born of the Virgin Mary in time. It is as if the Baptist were saying: "Although I was born before Him, He is not limited by the ties of His birth; for although He is born of His mother in time, He was generated by His Father outside of time" (St. Gregory the Great, "In Evangelia Homiliae", VII).

By saying what he says in verse 31, the Precursor does not mean to deny his personal knowledge of Jesus (cf. Luke 1:36 and Matthew 3:14), but to make it plain that God revealed to him the moment when he should publicly proclaim Jesus as Messiah and Son of God, and that he also understood that his own mission as precursor had no other purpose than to bear witness to Jesus Christ.

32-34. To emphasize the divinity of Jesus Christ, the Evangelist includes here the Precursor's testimony regarding Jesus' Baptism (cf. the other Gospels, which describe in more detail what happened on this occasion: Matthew 3:13-17 and paragraph). It is one of the key points in our Lord's life, in which the mystery of the Blessed Trinity is revealed (cf. note on Matthew 3:16).

The dove is a symbol of the Holy Spirit; of whom it is said in Genesis 1:2 that He was moving over the face of the waters. Through this sign of the dove, the Isaiah prophecies (11:2-5: 42:1-2) are fulfilled which say that the Messiah will be full of the power of the Holy Spirit. The Baptist points to the great difference between the baptism he confers and Christ's Baptism; in John 3, Jesus will speak about this new Baptism in water and in the Spirit (cf. Acts 1:5; Titus 3:5). "The Son of God": it should be pointed out that in the original text this expression carries the definite article, which means that John the Baptist confesses before his listeners the supernatural and transcendent character of Christ's messiahship--very far removed from the politico-religious notion which Jewish leaders had forged.

Source: Daily Word for Reflection—Navarre Bible

12 posted on 01/15/2023 11:07:42 AM PST by fidelis (👈 Under no obligation to respond to rude, ignorant, abusive, bellicose, and obnoxious posts.)
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To: fidelis
Click here to go to the My Catholic Life! Devotional thread for today’s Gospel Reading

Click here to go to the FR thread for the Sacred Page meditations on the Scripture readings for this Sunday's Mass.

13 posted on 01/15/2023 11:10:26 AM PST by fidelis (👈 Under no obligation to respond to rude, ignorant, abusive, bellicose, and obnoxious posts.)
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