Sunday of the Word of God

We’ll conclude our look at how the Church uses the Scriptures at Mass.

The Responsorial Psalm: The psalm is meant to be our response to the Word proclaimed. The Psalms are the prayer book of the Bible containing God’s words that we can make our own in every human circumstance: in joy, sorrow, love, grief, comfort, pain, security, or rest. When we pray the psalms we pray the same words Jesus used to pray to the Father. We praise God in the psalms and hear Jesus’ voice echo in ours and ours in his (St. Augustine).

The Second Reading: As the First Readings and Gospels show us some aspect of Jesus revealed, the letters of the New Testament show us different aspects of how Jesus works in the Church. The life of the Church in New Testament times was far from simple; Paul, Peter, James, John, and many others had their work cut out for them! We read in Paul’s letters of the many different matters of faith (like the mystery of the crucifixion in today’s reading from 1 Corinthians 2) the early Church was trying to comprehend under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Hearing the letters should increase faith, hope, and love, and the fruits of the Spirit, in our Church today.

This is the Church’s plan for reading the Scriptures every Sunday. You’ll hear a good amount of the Bible at Mass, but not all of it. It is up to every Catholic, every family and parish, to continually set aside time to hear and read the Scriptures, but most importantly to pray with them. God is speaking to you. His voice is not so unrecognizable, nor his message so far off. “For this command which I am giving you today is not too wondrous or remote for you… No, it is something very near to you, in your mouth and in your heart, to do it” (Deuteronomy 30:11, 14).

Written by Reverend Brian Meldrum


 

Saint Valentine

   St. Valentine was a widely recognized third-century Roman saint, commemorated in Christianity on February 14. St. Valentine was a bishop who ministered to Christians who were persecuted. Since the High Middle Ages, his feast day has been associated with a tradition of courtly love.

Sunday of the Word of God

Today we hear from Luke’s Gospel because of the feast of the Presentation of the Lord, but normally this liturgical year we hear from Matthew’s Gospel. God in his goodness and the Church in her wisdom give us plenty to feast upon when we hear the Scriptures proclaimed in the Liturgy of the Word.

The Gospel: Our Sunday Gospels follow a 3 year cycle. Matthew’s Gospel is known for his sermon on the mount (which we will begin hearing from next week) which portrays Jesus as the new Moses, going up the mountain to teach and deliver the law of the new covenant. We pray Matthew’s version the Our Father at Mass. In Christian art, Matthew is often portrayed as the human face, using imagery associated with each Evangelist from the prophet Ezekiel (1:10) and the Book of Revelation (4:7).

The First Reading: While the Gospel readings follow a sequence from week to week, unique Old Testament readings are paired with each Gospel. Sometimes the reason is easy to discern, and sometimes it is more challenging! Making these connections is one of the tasks of the homilist, so pray for those who preach the word. The Church has paired the readings together to show us some aspect of Jesus visible in the Old Testament. Often this is a miracle or parable, but sometimes it is an identity like priest, prophet, king, redeemer, or beloved son.

 Read today’s first reading and Gospel again with family or friends and ask: how do the prophet Malachi (3:1-4) and the Evangelist Luke (2:22-40) describe the Lord’s coming to the Temple? How is the Christ-child both a purifying fire and a light to the nations? God was present in the Temple, but where is he present in the Church today: The word? The Sacrament of the altar? The tabernacle? The heart of each person?

Reverend Brian Meldrum


 Confirmation Commitment Service

All are invited tomorrow tonight to the Church at 7 p.m. to support and encourage our 19 Confirmation Candidates. The candidates will stand before everyone and tell why they want to be confirmed, what Saint name they have chosen and what type of service projects they have been doing to prepare for the Sacrament in March. We hope to see you there!

 

Today is Sunday of the Word of God

Today we celebrate the first ever Sunday of the Word of God. Today we let Jesus open our minds to the beauty of the Scriptures, so we can proclaim the truth of the Good News that they contain. The Scriptures are not dead letters on a page, but living words that have been given life by the Holy Spirit, who also gives light to our minds when we read them. Nor is the Word of God a list of rules, but an invitation to share the life of the living God, their author.

 In his letter establishing today’s celebration, Pope Francis shares, “It is fitting, then, that the life of our people be constantly marked by this decisive relationship with the living word that the Lord never tires of speaking to his Bride, that she may grow in love and faithful witness” (Aperuit illis, 2). Every story told in the Scriptures, even the most challenging, reminds us that God loves his people and will always be faithful to the covenant he has made with us. God sent us his Son, the Word Incarnate, not only to speak these words of faithful love, but also to show us the depths of faithful love by dying on the cross and rising from the dead. Every word of Scripture points to this message of love enacted in the person of Jesus Christ, who is the Word himself.

 In honor of today’s celebration, thank the lectors at your parish who proclaim the Word of God and the priests and deacons who preach it. With your family or other parishioners, find a time today to re-read today’s Gospel (Matthew 4:12-23) and plan a time this week to read next Sunday’s Gospel (Luke 2:22-40). What does God need to teach you and cure within you so you can proclaim the Good News of his kingdom to others?

 

 Reverend Brian Meldrum


St. Valentine Catholic School Open House

St. Valentine Catholic School welcomes all families to our Open House on Wednesday, February 5, 2020 from 5:00-7:00pm. Please join us to find out the many benefits our school can provide for your child. Our school offers faith based educational excellence for Preschool through Grade Eight. At our open house you will have the opportunity to tour the school, meet the teachers, and gain valuable information about how our school can help your child. Our school is located in Redford on Hope St. just off of Beech Daly between Schoolcraft and Five Mile.  If you would like more information please call 313 533-7149 or visit our website @

www.stvalentineschool.com