The Catholic Parish of
Saint John Henry Newman

 Covering most of East Leeds

The Word This Week ~ 13 July 2014

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First Reading: Isaiah 55:10-11

This passage closes the second part of the book of Isaiah, which included the famous “Songs of the suffering servant”. Yet this final note sows a powerful seed of hope and the beginnings of consolation. The word of God is effective, as effective as rain or snow that allow for growth. In the
beginning, that word of God was the means of Creation. Now, for a suffering people, God reminds them that he is ever-recreating and his word has lost nothing of its power to make all things new.

Second Reading: Romans 8:18-23

In many ways, this is a daring reading for Paul: the image of child-birth. Creation is ‘pregnant’ with signs of an accomplishment yet to be achieved. The same is true of each individual. There is a struggle, often painful, towards a reality towards which we are drawn. Paul, interestingly, calls this ‘freedom.’ Yet it is not simply a liberty of political and social
import but rather the ‘freedom’ that comes from a deep understanding of ourselves as people in a relationship with a Father who loves us and welcomes us to his house.

Gospel Reading: Matthew 11: 25-3013: 1-23

One of the joys of any parable is its power to tease and to provoke. The story will be heard on multiple levels. It is meant to be a Wisdom teaching, a means of looking at our lives from a different perspective, so as to appreciate things in a new manner. Often people jump to conclusions about the interpretation of this parable, placing themselves too quickly
into one of the categories of people described. Element of each of the categories exist in us all, from brash enthusiasm at times to blind indifference at other times. The real challenge of the parable is the sense of faithfulness. With the consciousness that so often our work will seem to go in vain, in the face of obstacle and difficulties, faithfulness is the first step to Wisdom. The sower may never see the harvest, yet without his work, the harvest would never come!

Published Fri 11th Jul 2014 15:27:01

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