August 23, 2015
Twenty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 122 (NAB Translation)
Joshua 24:1-2A, 15-17, 18B
This week’s first reading from the Prophet Joshua is an idealized telling of the story of the people choosing to follow the Lord. In all likelihood, it wasn’t as organized as it sounds in this reading, but the heart of the story is true. The Jews chose to follow the Lord because they trusted in what He had done for their ancestors.
We will likely have many instances like this where we chose to follow the Lord. Like the people of God in the desert, we have likely all experienced doubt and frustration at different points in our spiritual life. Faith comes in staying committed, even when it’s difficult.
Psalm 34:2-3, 16-17, 18-19, 20-21
- (9a) Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.
In the second reading, we continue in St Paul’s letter to the Ephesians. The first part of this reading is very often misunderstood in explaining the relationship between husbands and wives. There is no doubt that men are being encouraged in their leadership of the domestic church, but the part that many often overlook is the mystical union with the suffering of the Lord on the cross.
St. Paul urges us to live out our union with Jesus as His true representatives here on earth. Marriage, in a special way, is the reflection of His love for His bride, the Church.
Alleluia John 6:63C, 68C
- Alleluia, alleluia.
Your words, Lord, are Spirit and life;
you have the words of everlasting life.
This week’s Gospel from St John continues the bread of Life discourse we have been hearing that past few weeks. The tone of this part of the conversation is very difficult. When many of the disciples finally understand what Jesus is teaching, they find it too difficult to accept.
Jesus has the opportunity to back down, but He never does. The Lord believes this is so central, that He is willing to lose followers over this teaching. This teaching is truly not optional or to be confused – the Eucharist is His true body, blood, soul, and divinity.
Gospel Meditation from Bishop Vásquez
In our lives, each of us is called to make important decisions. In today’s Gospel, some of those who witness the signs of Jesus decide to withdraw from him. Ask yourself, “Will I follow the Lord?”