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Contemplating today's Gospel

Today's Gospel + homily (in 300 words)

Tuesday 3rd in Ordinary Time

1st Reading (2Sam 6:12b-15.17-19): David went to bring up the ark of God from the house of Obed-edom into the City of David amid festivities. As soon as the bearers of the ark of the Lord had advanced six steps, he sacrificed an ox and a fatling. Then David, girt with a linen apron, came dancing before the Lord with abandon, as he and all the house of Israel were bringing up the ark of the Lord with shouts of joy and to the sound of the horn. The ark of the Lord was brought in and set in its place within the tent David had pitched for it. Then David offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the Lord. When he finished making these offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the Lord of hosts. He then distributed among all the people, to each man and each woman in the entire multitude of Israel, a loaf of bread, a cut of roast meat, and a raisin cake. With this, all the people left for their homes.
Responsorial Psalm: 23
R/. Who is this king of glory? It is the Lord!
Lift up, o gates, your lintels; reach up, you ancient portals, that the king of glory may come in!

Who is this king of glory? The Lord, strong and mighty, the Lord, mighty in battle.

Lift up, o gates, your lintels; reach up, you ancient portals, that the king of glory may come in!

Who is this king of glory? The Lord of hosts; he is the king of glory.
Versicle before the Gospel (Cf. Mt 11:25): Alleluia. Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth; you have revealed to little ones the mysteries of the Kingdom. Alleluia.
Gospel text (Mk 3,31-35): Jesus' mother and brothers came. As they stood outside, they sent someone to call him. The crowd sitting around Jesus told him, «Your mother and your brothers are outside asking for you». He replied, «Who are my mother and my brothers?». And looking around at those who sat there he said, «Here are my mother and my brothers. Whoever does the will of God is brother and sister and mother to me».

«Here are my mother and my brothers. Whoever does the will of God is brother and sister and mother to me»

Fr. Josep GASSÓ i Lécera (Ripollet, Barcelona, Spain)

Today, we find Jesus surrounded by a crowd of people in both a very concrete and compromising scene. Jesus' closer relatives had arrived from Nazareth and Caphernaum. But, seeing so many people around, they chose to wait outside and send for him instead. The crowd tells him: «Your mother and your brothers are outside asking for you. He replied, «Who are my mother and my brothers?» (Mk 3:31).

Jesus' answer is by no means a rejection towards his relatives. Jesus just moved away from them to follow the divine call and now, He also means that, intimately, He has given them up too: not because of lack of feelings or scorn of his family ties, but because He completely belongs to God the Father. Jesus Christ actually lived what He precisely expects from his disciples.

Jesus has chosen a spiritual family instead of his earthly one. He looks over the heads of those sitting next to him and says: «Here are my mother and my brothers. Whoever does the will of God is brother and sister and mother to me» (Mk 3:34-35). In other places of his Gospel, Saint Mark mentions Jesus glancing around too.

Is Jesus trying to tell us his only relatives are those who listen to him attentively? Of course not! His relatives are not those who listen to him but those who listen to and abide by God's will: it is those who are his brother, his sister, his mother...

Jesus is exhorting those sitting there —and everybody else— to enter their hearts in spiritual communion with him by abiding with the Divine Will. At the same time, however, He also praises his mother, the Virgin Mary, who is always blessed for having believed.

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