At the time of Jesus and when this Gospel was prepared by Mark, if there was anything that happened, any tragedy, sickness, or a natural phenomenon that the people did not understand, they attributed it to unclean spirits. They simply viewed miracles differently that we do. In our scientific and technological age, we would look at this scene and ask, “How did that happen? How did he do that?” They asked a different question, “Who is responsible?” Their answer was always the same, God. … more »
There is a very subtle yet important distinction needed to understand this Gospel. It is the difference between a “vocation” and a “purpose.” They are not always the same. A vocation might be a career or a talent that shows up with a job skill. A purpose is entirely different, and that is what Mark leads us to reflect upon and eventually to resolve as this Gospel moves forward.
Those men Jesus calls today have a career: fishing. It is their vocation. … more »
January 17, 2021 at Mary, Mother of Light Catholic Church in Tequesta, FL
In the Maronite Rite it is the Second Sunday after Epiphany and the Gospel text is the same as in the Roman Rite.
1 Samuel 3, 3-20 + Psalm40+ 1 Corinthians 6. 13-15 + John 1, 35-42
Thirty-five verses of John’s Gospel have passed, and then Jesus speaks. He asks a question. It is a question he asks every one of us in this church. “What are you looking for?” It is the question he will ask of those who come to arrest him, and he asks it of Mary Magdalen on the morning of his resurrection. No matter where we are or what we do, and whether we think about it or not, we are always answering that question. … more »
It is only the seventh verse of Mark’s Gospel. There has been nothing about a birth, the location, or the visitors. In Mark’s Gospel, there is a quotation from the Prophet Isaiah to confirm the work of John the Baptist, and the suddenly, there he is, Jesus, coming up from Nazareth: no choir of angels, no star, no shepherds or magi, just Jesus and John who says nothing in the presence Jesus. The only words are those Jesus hears: “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased, and he saw something. … more »
There is something here that I find a bit ironic. These foreigners were trapesing all over the place with the expectation that God was doing something new. While the very people in whom this action of God was takin place did nothing. The very leaders of the chosen people did nothing at all. Those leaders at the time had worked out a relationship with the Roman Empire that allowed them to function as long as they did not rock the boat. … more »