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Contemplating today's Gospel

Today's Gospel + homily (in 300 words)

Third Sunday in Ordinary Time (B)
1st Reading (Jonah 3:1-5.10): The word of the Lord came to Jonah, saying: «Set out for the great city of Nineveh, and announce to it the message that I will tell you». So Jonah made ready and went to Nineveh, according to the Lord’s bidding. Now Nineveh was an enormously large city; it took three days to go through it. Jonah began his journey through the city, and had gone but a single day’s walk announcing, «Forty days more and Nineveh shall be destroyed», when the people of Nineveh believed God; they proclaimed a fast and all of them, great and small, put on sackcloth. When God saw by their actions how they turned from their evil way, he repented of the evil that he had threatened to do to them; he did not carry it out.
Responsorial Psalm: 24
R/. Teach me your ways, o Lord.
Your ways, o Lord, make known to me; teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my savior.

Remember that your compassion, o Lord, and your love are from of old. In your kindness remember me, because of your goodness, o Lord.

Good and upright is the Lord; thus he shows sinners the way. He guides the humble to justice and teaches the humble his way.
2nd Reading (1Cor 7:29-31): I tell you, brothers and sisters, the time is running out. From now on, let those having wives act as not having them, those weeping as not weeping, those rejoicing as not rejoicing, those buying as not owning, those using the world as not using it fully. For the world in its present form is passing away.
Versicle before the Gospel (Mk 1:15): Alleluia. The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent and believe in the Gospel. Alleluia.
Gospel text (Mk 1:14-20): After John had been arrested, Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God: “This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.” As he passed by the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting their nets into the sea; they were fishermen. Jesus said to them, “Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Then they abandoned their nets and followed him. He walked along a little farther and saw James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John. They too were in a boat mending their nets. Then he called them. So they left their father Zebedee in the boat along with the hired men and followed him.

“Repent, and believe in the gospel.”

Fr. Lluís ROQUÉ i Roqué (Manresa, Barcelona, Spain)

Today the Church invites us to convert and, with Jesus, is telling us: "Repent, and believe in the gospel" (Mark 1:15). Therefore, we must heed Jesus Christ, while correcting and improving what is necessary.

Every human action connects with God's eternal plan for us and the calling to listen to Jesus, to follow Him in everything and for everything, and to proclaim Him as the first disciples did, as millions have done and we strive to do.

Now is the opportunity to find God in Jesus Christ; now is the moment in our lives that connects with either a blissful or a miserable eternity; now is the time God gives us to encounter Him, to live as His children, and to ensure that daily events carry the divine transcendence that Jesus Christ —with His life through time— has imprinted on them.

We cannot miss this opportunity! Our life may be more or less lengthy in time, but will always be too short, for "the world in its present form is passing away" (1 Corinthians 7:31). Afterward, it will be an eternity with God and His faithful in full life and happiness, or away from God —with the unfaithful— in a life of total darkness.

Thus, the hours, days, months, and years are not for wasting, nor for settling down and passing them unnoticed with a futile “just getting by”. They are for living what Jesus has proclaimed in the saving Gospel, here and now: to live in God, loving everything and everyone. And so, those who have loved —Mary, Mother of God and our Mother; the saints; those who have been faithful until the end of earthly life— have been able to hear: "Well done, my good and faithful servant… Come, share your master’s joy" (Matthew 25:23).

Let us convert! It is worth it. We will love and be happy from now on.

Thoughts on Today's Gospel

  • “True faith knows no procrastination. As soon as they heard him, they believed, followed him and became fishers of men.” (Saint Jerome)

  • “God awaits us and accompanies us. Such is the Lord eternal love. Eternal and yet concrete. His love is an art, he goes along making history and preparing the way for each one of us. And this is God’s love.” (Francis)

  • “The Paschal mystery of Christ's cross and Resurrection stands at the center of the Good News that the apostles, and the Church following them, are to proclaim to the world. God's saving plan was accomplished ‘once for all’ (Heb 9:26) by the redemptive death of his Son Jesus Christ.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, Nº 571)