DAILY MASS READINGS (October 28, 2018)

30TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME/PRISON AWARENESS SUNDAY (CYCLE B, Green)

 

Reading 1 (JEREMIAH 31:7-9)

A reading from the Book of the Prophet Jeremiah

Thus says the LORD:
Shout with joy for Jacob,
exult at the head of the nations;
proclaim your praise and say:
The LORD has delivered his people,
the remnant of Israel.
Behold, I will bring them back
from the land of the north;
I will gather them from the ends of the world,
with the blind and the lame in their midst,
the mothers and those with child;
they shall return as an immense throng.
They departed in tears,
but I will console them and guide them;
I will lead them to brooks of water,
on a level road, so that none shall stumble.
For I am a father to Israel,
Ephraim is my first-born.
– The word of the Lord.

Responsorial Psalm (PSALM 126:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 6)

R. (3) The Lord has done great things for us; we are filled with joy.
When the LORD brought back the captives of Zion,
we were like men dreaming.
Then our mouth was filled with laughter,
and our tongue with rejoicing.
R. The Lord has done great things for us; we are filled with joy.
Then they said among the nations,
“The LORD has done great things for them.”
The LORD has done great things for us;
we are glad indeed.
R. The Lord has done great things for us; we are filled with joy.
Restore our fortunes, O LORD,
like the torrents in the southern desert.
Those that sow in tears
shall reap rejoicing.
R. The Lord has done great things for us; we are filled with joy.
Although they go forth weeping,
carrying the seed to be sown,
They shall come back rejoicing,
carrying their sheaves.
R. The Lord has done great things for us; we are filled with joy.

Reading 2 (HEBREWS 5:1-6)

A reading from the Letter to the Hebrews

Brothers and sisters:
Every high priest is taken from among men
and made their representative before God,
to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins.
He is able to deal patiently with the ignorant and erring,
for he himself is beset by weakness
and so, for this reason, must make sin offerings for himself
as well as for the people.
No one takes this honor upon himself
but only when called by God,
just as Aaron was.
In the same way,
it was not Christ who glorified himself in becoming high priest,
but rather the one who said to him:
You are my son:
this day I have begotten you;
just as he says in another place:
You are a priest forever
according to the order of Melchizedek.
The word of the Lord.

Alleluia (CF. 2 TIMOTHY 1:10)

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Our Savior Jesus Christ destroyed death
and brought life to light through the Gospel.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel (MARK 10:46-52)

A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Mark

As Jesus was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a sizable crowd,
Bartimaeus, a blind man, the son of Timaeus,
sat by the roadside begging.
On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth,
he began to cry out and say,
“Jesus, son of David, have pity on me.”
And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent.
But he kept calling out all the more,
“Son of David, have pity on me.”
Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.”
So they called the blind man, saying to him,
“Take courage; get up, Jesus is calling you.”
He threw aside his cloak, sprang up, and came to Jesus.
Jesus said to him in reply, “What do you want me to do for you?”
The blind man replied to him, “Master, I want to see.”
Jesus told him, “Go your way; your faith has saved you.”
Immediately he received his sight
and followed him on the way.
– The Gospel of the Lord.
Reflection: Faith comes through Physical and Spiritual Openness. In the Gospel (Mark 10:46-52), we hear how Jesus healed the blind man, Bartimaeus. What is amazing is that before this happened, Bartimaeus called out Jesus for help by using one of the titles pertaining to Christ, which is Son of David. It may be that he heard from many about this man, but in real life, he believed that Christ is the Messiah sent by God the Father to have mercy on the afflicted, which includes him. And this is Spiritual Openness. Because of that, he was given Physical Openness when Christ gave him back his sight. So this story is about faith. Like Bartimaeus, we should be both spiritually and physically open to the goodness of life and grace. In the First Reading (Jeremiah 31:7-9), we have heard how God is merciful to us, that he has promised to deliver us from bondage, especially to the people of Judah who are in Babylonian exile. This prefigures the exodus that Christ will perform in fulfillment of God’s loving salvific plan. In the Second Reading (Hebrews 5:1-6), Jesus is our Merciful High Priest who has offered the greatest sacrifice of all that there is no need of any physical sacrifice, and that is himself. Every time we celebrate the Eucharist, we have to remember that we are not sacrificing Christ again, but rather we are sacramentally remembering his offering of self present in the bread and wine that has become his Body and Blood. Though he is God, he humbled himself into our nature except sin, so that he might submit himself to the will of God the Father and show the Father cares for humanity. So just like Jesus, we should be both spiritually and physically open to reach out ourselves to others and serve their needs. We should not be spiritually blind, meaning not opening ourselves to the realities in life and showing no concern for others. Let us remove that habit, and be opened to the light of salvation. May we have good hearts to help and serve others, especially in their time of need. And since today is Prison Awareness Sunday, let us pray for those prisoners in the jails and prison cells, that their dignity as human persons may be respected by those who guard the,, and that they may be open to the Divine Mercy of God, and experience a spiritual conversion. As we journey down this road, let us manifest the virtue of faith by being physically and spiritually open before the Lord by doing acts of charity and kindness to our brothers and sisters, and by inspiring them also to be good model Christians.

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