Sunday Readings and Reflections

Sunday, January 31 
Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time 


Roman Ordinary calendar


St. John Bosco, St. Marcella – Widow (325-410)


Book of Deuteronomy 18,15-20.

Moses spoke to all the people, saying: “A prophet like me will the LORD, your God, raise up for you from among your own kin; to him you shall listen. 
This is exactly what you requested of the LORD, your God, at Horeb on the day of the assembly, when you said, ‘Let us not again hear the voice of the LORD, our God, nor see this great fire any more, lest we die.’ 
And the LORD said to me, ‘This was well said. 
I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their kinsmen, and will put my words into his mouth; he shall tell them all that I command him. 
If any man will not listen to my words which he speaks in my name, I myself will make him answer for it. 
But if a prophet presumes to speak in my name an oracle that I have not commanded him to speak, or speaks in the name of other gods, he shall die.’ 

Psalms 95(94),1-2.6-7abc.7d-9.

Come, let us sing joyfully to the LORD; 
let us acclaim the Rock of our salvation. 
Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; 
let us joyfully sing psalms to him. 

Come, let us bow down in worship; 
let us kneel before the LORD who made us. 
For he is our God, 
And we are the people he shepherds, the flock he guides. 
For he is our God, 

and we are the people he shepherds, the flock he guides. 
Oh, that today you would hear his voice: 
Oh, that today you would hear his voice: 
“Harden not your hearts as at Meribah, 
as in the day of Massah in the desert, 

Where your fathers tempted me; 
they tested me though they had seen my works.”   

First Letter to the Corinthians 7,32-35.

Brothers and sisters: I should like you to be free of anxieties. An unmarried man is anxious about the things of the Lord, how he may please the Lord. 
But a married man is anxious about the things of the world, how he may please his wife, and he is divided. An unmarried woman or a virgin is anxious about the things of the Lord, so that she may be holy in both body and spirit. A married woman, on the other hand, is anxious about the things of the world, how she may please her husband. 
I am telling you this for your own benefit, not to impose a restraint upon you, but for the sake of propriety and adherence to the Lord without distraction. 

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Mark 1,21-28.

Jesus came to Capernaum with his followers, and on the sabbath he entered the synagogue and taught. 
The people were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority and not as the scribes. 
In their synagogue was a man with an unclean spirit; 
he cried out, “What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are–the Holy One of God!” 
Jesus rebuked him and said, “Quiet! Come out of him!” 
The unclean spirit convulsed him and with a loud cry came out of him. 
All were amazed and asked one another, “What is this? A new teaching with authority. He commands even the unclean spirits and they obey him.” 
His fame spread everywhere throughout the whole region of Galilee. 


Saint Bonaventure (1221-1274) 
Franciscan, Doctor of the Church 
Sermon ‘Christus unus omnium magister’

“A new teaching with authority”

“Only one is your teacher, the Messiah.” (Mt 23:10). (…) For Christ is “the reflection of the Father’s glory, the exact representation of the Father’s being, and he sustains all things by his powerful word.” (Heb 1:3) He is the origin of all wisdom. The Word of God in the heights is the source of wisdom. Christ is the source of all true knowledge, for he is “the way, the truth, and the life.” (Jn 14:6). (…) As way, Christ is the teacher and origin of knowledge according to faith. (…) That is why Peter teaches in his second letter: “We possess the prophetic message as something altogether reliable. Keep your attention closely fixed on it, as you would on a lamp shining in a dark place.” (1:19). (…) For through his coming in the spirit, Christ is the origin of all revelation, and through his coming in the flesh, he is the strengthening of all authority.

He comes first in the spirit as the revealing light of every prophetic vision. According to Daniel: “He reveals deep and hidden things and knows what is in the darkness, for the light dwells with him.” (2:22) This is the light of divine wisdom, which is in Christ. According to John, Christ said: “I am the light of the world. No follower of mine shall ever walk in darkness” (8:12), and “While you have the light, keep faith in the light; thus you will become children of light.” (12:36). (…) Without this light which is Christ, no one can penetrate the secrets of faith. And that is why we read in the Book of Wisdom: “O God, send forth that Wisdom from your holy heavens and from your glorious throne dispatch her that she may be with me and work with me, that I may know what is your pleasure (…) For what man knows God’s counsel, or who can conceive what the Lord intends?” (9:10-13) No one can come to the certainty of revealed faith except through Christ’s coming in the spirit and the flesh.

Traditional Latin Mass readings for SEPTUAGESIMA SUNDAY (MASS Circumdedérunt me (violet))

Painting of the parable, by Patrick Paearz de Wet, mid-17th century

EPISTLE
1 Corinthians 9: 24-27; 10: 1-5 
Fratres: Nescítis, quod ii, qui in stádio currunt, omnes quidem currunt, sed unus áccipit bravíum? Sic cúrrite, ut comprehendátis. Omnis autem, qui in agóne conténdit, ab ómnibus se ábstinet: et illi quidem ut corruptíbilem corónam accípiant; nos autem incorrúptam. Ego ígitur sic curro, non quasi in incértum: sic pugno, non quasi áërem vérberans: sed castígo corpus meum, et in servitútem rédigo: ne forte cum áliis prædicáverim, ipse réprobus effíciar. Nolo enim vos ignoráre, fratres, quóniam patres nostri omnes sub nube fuérunt, et omnes mare transiérunt, et omnes in Móyse baptizáti sunt in nube, et in mari: et omnes eámdem escam spiritálem manducavérunt, et omnes eúndem potum spiritálem bibérunt (bibébant autem de spiritáli, consequénte eos, petra: petra autem erat Christus:) sed non in plúribus eórum beneplácitum est Deo.

Brethren: Know you not that they that run in the race, all run indeed, but one receiveth the prize? So run that you may obtain. And everyone that striveth for the mastery refraineth himself from all things: and they indeed that they may receive a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible one. I therefore so run, not as at an uncertainty; I so fight, not as one beating the air; but I chastise my body, and bring it into subjection, lest perhaps when I have preached to others, I myself should become a castaway. For I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all in Moses were baptized, in the cloud and in the sea: and did all eat the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink: (and they drank of the spiritual rock that followed them: and the rock was Christ). But with most of them God was not well pleased.

GRADUAL Psalms 9: 10,11,19, 20

Adjútor in opportunitátibus, in tribulatióne: sperent in te, qui novérunt te: quóniam non derelínquis quæréntes te, Dómine. Quóniam non in finem oblívio erit páuperis: patiéntia páuperum non períbit in ætérnum: exsúrge, Dómine, non præváleat homo.

A helper in due time in tribulation: let them trust in Thee who know Thee; for Thou has not forsaken them that seek Thee, O Lord. For the poor man shall not be forgotten to the end: the patience of the poor shall not perish for ever: arise, O Lord, let no man prevail.

TRACT Psalms 129: 1-4

De profúndis clamávi ad te, Dómine: Dómine, exáudi vocem meam. Fiant aures tuæ intendéntes in oratiónem servi tui. Si iniquitátes observáveris, Dómine: Dómine, quis sustinébit? Quia apud te propitiátio est, et propter legem tuam sustínui te, Dómine.

Out of the depths I have cried to Thee, O Lord: Lord, hear my voice. Let Thine ears be attentive to the prayer of Thy servant. If Thou, O Lord, wilt mark iniquities: O Lord, who shall abide it? For with Thee there is merciful forgiveness, and by reason of Thy law I have waited for Thee, O Lord.

GOSPEL Matthew 20: 1-16

In illo témpore: Dixit Jesus discípulis suis parábolam hanc: Simile est regnum cælórum hómini patrifamílias, qui éxiit primo mane condúcere operários in víneam suam. Conventióne autem facta cum operáriis ex denário diúrno, misit eos in víneam suam. Et egréssus circa horam tértiam, vidit álios stantes in foro otiósos, et dixit illis: Ite et vos in víneam meam, et quod justum fúerit, dabo vobis. Illi autem abiérunt. Iterum autem éxiit circa sextam et nonam horam: et fecit simíliter. Circa undécimam vero éxiit, et invénit álios stantes, et dicit illis: Quid hic statis tota die otiósi? Dicunt ei: Quia nemo nos condúxit. Dicit illis: Ite et vos in víneam meam. Cum sero autem factum esset, dicit dóminus víneæ procuratóri suo: Voca operários, et redde illis mercédem, incípiens a novíssimis usque ad primos. Cum veníssent ergo qui circa undécimam horam vénerant, accepérunt síngulos denários. Veniéntes autem et primi, arbitráti sunt quod plus essent acceptúri: accepérunt autem et ipsi síngulos denários. Et accipiéntes murmurábant advérsus patremfamílias, dicéntes: Hi novíssimi una hora fecérunt, et pares illos nobis fecísti, qui portávimus pondus diéi et æstus. At ille respóndens uni eórum, dixit: Amíce, non fácio tibi injúriam: nonne ex denário convenísti mecum? Tolle quod tuum est, et vade: volo autem et huic novíssimo dare sicut et tibi. Aut non licet mihi, quod volo, fácere? an óculus tuus nequam est, quia ego bonus sum? Sic erunt novíssimi primi, et primi novíssimi. Multi enim sunt vocáti, pauci vero elécti.

At that time Jesus spoke to his disciples this parable: The kingdom of heaven is like to an householder who went out early in the morning to hire laborers into his vineyard. And having agreed with the laborers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard. And going out about the third hour, he saw others standing in the market place idle, and he said to them: Go you also into my vineyard, and I will give you what shall be just. And they went their way. And again he went out about the sixth and the ninth hour: and did in like manner. But about the eleventh hour he went out and found others standing, and he said to them: Why stand you here all the day idle? They say to him: Because no man has hired us. He said to them: Go you also into my vineyard. And when evening was come, the lord of the vineyard said to his steward: Call the laborers and pay them their hire, beginning from the last even to the first. When therefore they were come that came about the eleventh hour, they received every man a penny. But when the first also came, they thought that they should receive more: and they also received every man a penny. And receiving it they murmured against the master of the house, saying: These last have worked but one hour, and thou hast made them equal to us that have borne the burden of the day and the heats. But he answering said to one of them: Friend, I do thee no wrong: did thou not agree with me for a penny? Take what is thine and go thy way: I will also give to this last even as to thee. Or, is it not lawful for me to do what I will? Is thy eye evil, because I am good? So shall the last be first, and the first last. For many are called, but few chosen.

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2 Responses to Sunday Readings and Reflections

  1. The Good Shepherd tests us and He knows His own. Who are we to question Him and His infinite wisdom! We all must share in the burden and struggle of life here, just as anyone who is fit and able must earn his or her keep being thankful all the day! He told us to take up our cross and follow Him! Amen.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Brother Burrito says:

    St John Bosco’s vision:

    http://www.marys-touch.com/Saints/bosco.htm

    (31st January is his Feast)

    Liked by 2 people

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