Tuesday, January 20, 2015


WEDNESDAY, 2nd Week in Ordinary Time

January 21, 2015 WEDNESDAY, 2nd Week in Ordinary Time

Agnes, Virgin and Martyr

Memorial, Red


Heb 7: 1-3, 15–17 / Mk 3: 1-6


[St. Agnes, from a noble Roman family, was martyred by beheading at age 13 in 304.]


Reading: Heb 7: 1-3, 15–17

     Scripture says that Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, came out to meet Abraham who returned from defeating the kings. He blessed Abraham and Abraham gave him a tenth of everything.

     Let us note that the name Melchizedek means King of Justice, and that king of Salem means king of Peace. There is no mention of father, mother or genealogy; nothing is said about the beginning or the end of his life. In this he is the figure of the Son of God, the priest who remains forever.

     All this, however, becomes clear if this priest after the likeness of Melchizedek has in fact received his mission, not on the basis of any human law, but by the power of an immortal life.  Because Scripture says: You are a priest forever in the priestly order of Melchizedek.


Gospel: Mk 3: 1-6

     Again Jesus entered the synagogue. A man who had a paralyzed hand was there and some people watched Jesus: Would he heal the man on the sabbath? If he did they could accuse him.

     Jesus said to the man with the paralyzed hand, "Stand here in the center." Then he asked them, "What does the Law allow us to do on the sabbath? To do good or to do harm? To save life or to kill?" But they were silent.

     Then Jesus looked around at them with anger and deep sadness because they had closed their minds. And he said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." He stretched it out and his hand was healed. But as soon as the Pharisees left, they met with the Herod's supporters, looking for a way to destroy Jesus.



     Jesus is the God of mercy; he wants to make us whole by his healing and forgiving power. When he healed a man with a paralyzed hand in today's Gospel reading, he set the man free from his bodily disability. This was another act of pity and love of Jesus.

     But the healing was done on the sabbath in the presence of Pharisees and others who cared more about the letter of the Law than about the Law's true spirit. They took it against Jesus that he healed on the Sabbath and thus broke the sanctity of the Sabbath. In their teaching they could not understand that the Law was made for the good of man and not man for the Law. They cared for the letter and the strict observance of the Law in the way they interpreted it but failed to appreciate its core values and true rationale. They loved the Law and forgot about the Giver and intent of the Law.

     The man with the paralyzed hand was cured when, at one sabbath, he encountered the Lord, the Giver of the Law. This man left Jesus healed and restored.

     Jesus was filled "with anger and deep sadness because they [the Pharisees] had closed their minds." They did not care about the man with the paralyzed hand; they could not be joyful and thankful that this afflicted man was cured by the power of Jesus. Afraid and silent, unable to reply to Jesus questions, "What does the Law allow us to do on the sabbath? To do good or do harm? To save life or to kill," all the Pharisees could do was to go away with their "closed minds" to immediately conspire with the followers of Herod, "looking for a way to destroy Jesus."

     Let us pray that we follow and live God's Law with joy and true understanding.








Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most. 


Have a good day!



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