The Catholic Parish of
Saint John Henry Newman

 Covering most of East Leeds

The Word This Week ~ 16 March 2014

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First Reading: Genesis 12:1-4

This very early text foretells Abraham’s paternity over “all the tribes of the earth.” His obstinate faith is not given due recognition in this reading as he is characterised as a docile man going “as the Lord told him”, Abraham was faithful, but this periscope prioritises God’s ever-enduring and greater faithfulness, whose prophecy here is played out in every Eucharistic celebration where Abraham is revered as our father in faith.

Second Reading: 2 Timothy 1:8-10

A pastoral tone characterises Paul’s letters to Timothy and Titus. Paul expresses a deep concern for the fledgling church. This letter in particular contains specific instructions for the life of the Church. The
hardships that Paul exhorts us to bear are submerged into a bigger and greater phenomenon – the grace of God. For Paul, every hardship we endure will be completely subsumed by the immortality offered through that same grace.

Gospel: Matthew 17:1-9

There is a tendency to contemplate the emotions of Peter, James and John in this magnificent story – their terror, confusion and delight. But what of Jesus” own experience? After al he was human! There is a wonderful African saying that states, “we become ourselves through other people”. The story of the transfiguration is a very apt application of that adage.
Without separating out the elements of the story, Jesus looked different to the disciples in their company alone – shining and dazzling. What a wonderful way to be described by your close friends! Through Moses, Elijah
and the voice from the cloud, Jesus’ identity and divinity are confirmed so that as he descends the mountain his final purpose is quite clear.

Published Fri 14th Mar 2014 19:19:12

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