Twelfth Sunday of Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 96 (NAB Translation)
In this week’s first reading from the Old Testament the Prophet Zechariah addresses the people of Jerusalem who have suffered much while trying to rebuild their city after their return from exile in Babylon. Zechariah speaks of a mysterious servant who will be “pierced through” by his own people and whom God then infuses with a spirit of deep sorrow and contrition. The Gospel of John references this passage when it speaks of the piercing of Jesus’ side after his crucifixion. The sacrament of Baptism is also prefigured when Zechariah says, “There will be a purification of the heart by means of water from a special fountain set up by God.”
The response for this Psalm is: “My soul is thirsting for you, oh Lord, my God.”
In this week’s reading from Saint Paul’s letter to the Galatians, we hear the great news about our true identity in Christ given to us by faith. Old categories that separated us from one another no longer apply. We are unified and defined by our relationship with Christ, assuming the privileges of being children of God in Christ Jesus. Saint Paul states “All baptised in Christ, you have all clothed yourselves in Christ, and there are no more distinctions between Jew and Greek, slave and free, male and female, but all of you are one in Christ Jesus.” This profound revelation gives unity and wholeness to us as individuals and as members of Christ’s mystical body.
In this week’s Gospel from St. Luke, we see Peter answer Jesus’ incredibly important question: “Who do you say that I am?” Peter acknowledges that Jesus is the Christ, but probably doesn’t understand the full implications of what that means. He was certainly surprised when Jesus indicated that suffering and death would be involved. Then to dispel any doubt about the cost of being a disciple Jesus says, “If anyone wants to be a follower of mine, let him renounce himself and take up his cross every day and follow me. For anyone who wants to save his life will lose it; but anyone who loses his life for my sake, that man will save it.” This was probably tough to hear and worthy of our own reflection. Our own ability to assume our roles as disciples hinges on how we answer the question “Who do you say that I am?”
Reflection question from Bishop Vásquez
Often we may just want to fit in and blend with the crowd. Are we recognizable Christian witnesses? Do others encounter Christ through us by our example and words? Are we clothed with Christ doing God’s will or do we follow our own desires when the path is difficult?
Con frecuencia sólo queremos encajar con los demás ¿Somos reconocibles como testigos Cristianos? ¿Encuentran los demás a Cristo a través de nosotros por nuestro ejemplo y palabra? ¿Hacemos la voluntad de Dios revestidos de Cristo o seguimos nuestros propios deseos cuando el camino es difícil?
Bishop Vásquez’ prayer request
Please consider Bishop Vásquez’ prayer request for the 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time (June 19):
That having acknowledged Jesus as the Son of God, our lives would give witness to Him in all we do both in public and in private …
Por que, habiendo reconocido a Jesús como el Hijo de Dios, nuestras vidas den testimonio de Él en todo lo que hagamos, en público y en privado…