Sunday Readings and Reflections

Baptism of Christ – Guido Reni (1575 – 1642)

Sunday, January 9 
Baptism of the Lord – Feast 

Roman Ordinary calendar

Sts. Julian and Basilissa

Book of Isaiah 40,1-5.9-11.

Comfort, give comfort to my people, says your God. 
Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and proclaim to her that her service is at an end, her guilt is expiated; Indeed, she has received from the hand of the LORD double for all her sins. 
A voice cries out: In the desert prepare the way of the LORD! Make straight in the wasteland a highway for our God! 
Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill shall be made low; The rugged land shall be made a plain, the rough country, a broad valley. 
Then the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all mankind shall see it together; for the mouth of the LORD has spoken. 
Go up onto a high mountain, Zion, herald of glad tidings; Cry out at the top of your voice, Jerusalem, herald of good news! Fear not to cry out and say to the cities of Judah: Here is your God! 
Here comes with power the Lord GOD, who rules by his strong arm; Here is his reward with him, his recompense before him. 
Like a shepherd he feeds his flock; in his arms he gathers the lambs, Carrying them in his bosom, and leading the ewes with care. 

Psalms 104(103),1b-2.3-4.24-25.27-28.29-30.

O LORD, my God, you are great indeed! 
You are clothed with majesty and glory, 
robed in light as with a cloak. 
You have spread out the heavens like a tent-cloth. 

You have constructed your palace upon the waters. 
You make the clouds your chariot; 
you travel on the wings of the wind. 
You make the winds your messengers, 

and flaming fire your ministers. 
How manifold are your works, O LORD! 
the earth is full of your creatures; 
the sea also, great and wide, 

in which are schools without number 
of living things both small and great. 
All creatures look to you 
to give them food in due time. 

When you give to them, they gather it; 
when you open your hand, they are well filled with good things. 
If you take away their breath, they perish 
and return to their dust. 

When you send forth your spirit, they are created, 
and you renew the face of the earth. 

Letter to Titus 2,11-14.3,4-7.

Beloved: The grace of God has appeared, saving all 
and training us to reject godless ways and worldly desires and to live temperately, justly, and devoutly in this age, 
as we await the blessed hope, the appearance of the glory of the great God and of our savior Jesus Christ, 
who gave himself for us to deliver us from all lawlessness and to cleanse for himself a people as his own, eager to do what is good. 
But when the kindness and generous love of God our savior appeared, 
not because of any righteous deeds we had done but because of his mercy, he saved us through the bath of rebirth and renewal by the holy Spirit, 
whom he richly poured out on us through Jesus Christ our savior, 
so that we might be justified by his grace and become heirs in hope of eternal life. 

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 3,15-16.21-22.

The people were filled with expectation, and all were asking in their hearts whether John might be the Christ. 
John answered them all, saying, “I am baptizing you with water, but one mightier than I is coming. I am not worthy to loosen the thongs of his sandals. He will baptize you with the holy Spirit and fire. 
After all the people had been baptized and Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, heaven was opened 
and the holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.” 

Saint Gregory Nazianzen (330-390) 
Bishop and Doctor of the Church 
Homily 39, for the feast of Epiphany; PG 36, 349 (trans. Breviary)

“Then heaven was opened”

Christ is illumined, let us shine forth with him; Christ is baptized, let us descend with him that we may also ascend with him. (…) John baptizes, Jesus comes to him; perhaps to sanctify the Baptist himself, but certainly to bury the whole of the old Adam in the water. But before this, and for the sake of this, to sanctify Jordan. As he is Spirit and flesh, so he consecrates us by Spirit and water. (…) Now Jesus goes up out of the water; for with himself he carries up the world and sees the heaven split open (cf. Mk 1:10) which Adam had shut against himself and all his posterity when he was expelled from the Paradise defended by the flaming sword.

Now the Spirit bears witness to his Godhead, for he descends upon one who is like him, as does the Voice from heaven (for he to whom witness is borne comes from thence), and like a dove seen in bodily form it bestows honour on his body since God, by showing himself in bodily form, has deified the body also. In the same way, in distant ages past, a dove came to proclaim an ending to the Deluge (Gen 8:11). (…)

As for us, let us venerate today the baptism of Christ and celebrate this feast in worthy fashion. (…) Wash yourselves and keep yourselves clean. For God rejoices in nothing so much as the amendment and salvation of humankind, on whose behalf all these words and mystery are directed. Be like lights in the world (Phil 2:15), a life-giving force to others. Stand as perfect lights beside that great Light and learn the mystery of the illumination of heaven, enlightened more purely and more clearly by the blessed Trinity.

Traditional Latin Mass Readings for this Sunday

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