January 11, 2011
January 12th Holy Spirit Novena
Scripture selection is Day 2 Period II.
The Novena Rosary Mysteries
for January 12th are Joyful.
January 10th - 13th
Mass on January 13th - 11:00am
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Given January 9, 2011 - Baptism of Jesus
Baptism of the Lord
Isaiah 42: 1-4, 6-7
Here is my servant whom I uphold,
my chosen one
in whom my soul delights.
I have sent my spirit upon him,
he will bring fair judgement to the nations.
He does not cry out or raise his voice,
his voice is not heard in the street;
he does not break the crushed reed
or snuff the faltering wick.
Faithfully he presents fair judgement;
he will not grow faint,
he will not be crushed
until he has established
fair judgement on earth,
and the coasts and islands
are waiting for his instruction.
I, Yahweh, have called you
in saving justice,
I have grasped you by the hand
and shaped you;
I have made you a covenant of the people
and light to the nations,
to open the eyes of the blind,
to free captives from prison,
and those who live in darkness
from the dungeon.
Psalm 29: 1-4, 9-10
Give Yahweh his due, sons of God,
give Yahweh his due of glory and strength,
give Yahweh the glory due to his name,
adore Yahweh in the splendour of holiness.
Yahweh's voice over the waters, the God of glory thunders;
Yahweh over countless waters,
Yahweh's voice in power, Yahweh's voice in splendour;
Yahweh's voice convulses terebinths,
strips forests bare.
In his palace all cry, 'Glory!'
Yahweh was enthroned for the flood,
Yahweh is enthroned as king for ever.
Acts 10: 34-38
Then Peter addressed them, ‘I now really understand’, he said, ‘that God has no favourites, but that anybody of any nationality who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him.
‘God sent his word to the people of Israel, and it was to them that the good news of peace was brought by Jesus Christ—he is the Lord of all. You know what happened all over Judaea, how Jesus of Nazareth began in Galilee, after John had been preaching baptism. God had anointed him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and because God was with him, Jesus went about doing good and curing all who had fallen into the power of the devil.
Matthew 3: 13-17
Then Jesus appeared: he came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptised by John. John tried to dissuade him, with the words, ‘It is I who need baptism from you, and yet you come to me!’ But Jesus replied, ‘Leave it like this for the time being; it is fitting that we should, in this way, do all that uprightness demands.’ Then John gave in to him.
And when Jesus had been baptised he at once came up from the water, and suddenly the heavens opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming down on him. And suddenly there was a voice from heaven, ‘This is my Son, the Beloved; my favour rests on him.’
Baptism of the Lord
January 13, 2008
INTRODUCTION: The words of the prophet Isaiah in today’s first reading go back 500 years before Christ. This passage was intended for the Jews who were in exile in Babylon. God is, through the prophet, introducing a person referred to only as God’s servant to his people. God is quite pleased with his servant. In a non-violent way, God's servant will establish justice in the world, be a light to the nations and liberation for captives. Scholars debate who this servant might have been 500 years before Christ, but with the coming of Christ, there is no doubt who is God's perfect servant. At Jesus’ baptism, God introduces Jesus to the world, not just as his servant, but as his beloved Son with whom he is well-pleased.
HOMILY: If you struggle to understand the baptism of Jesus, you’re not alone. Even John the Baptist had difficulty understanding why Jesus came to him for baptism. As John said “I need to be baptized by you, and yet you are coming to me?”
The baptism of Jesus is a mystery worthy of our contemplation. Certainly Pope John Paul considered it as something worth meditating on when he made it one of the mysteries in the new set of mysteries he created for the rosary: the luminous mysteries or the mysteries of light.
Our business manager, Carol Roosa, is taking a course at the Athenaeum to become a parish administrator. She had to present a paper last week and the topic was baptism. The professor was quite impressed with it and so she volunteered to preach this Sunday. I said “no.” She said it would only take an hour and fifteen minutes. You would be happy to know I stood my ground. Besides, only priests and deacons are allowed to do a homily. I say all of this to illustrate there is so much that could be said about baptism. I’m not going to say it all. My few words today will, I hope, throw a little light on the sacrament of baptism and might help make the baptism of Jesus a little more understandable.
First I want to point out one way in which the baptism of Jesus by John was totally different from our sacrament of baptism. Then I want to mention one way in which they are similar.
If I were to ask the average Catholic what do you think of when you hear the word baptism, most would answer, “Baptism takes away original sin.” That’s true but there is a better answer. Let me illustrate. (show wallet) Now many of you know what this is: a wallet. And it’s empty, and some of you might relate to that too. That’s basically what original sin is. It is emptiness, like this wallet. It’s a big nothing. We are empty of God’s grace and life. Suppose, for example, by some unbelievable odds, I would win a million dollars in the lottery. I would get that big check (less taxes) and put it in the wallet. If someone were to ask me, “what’s in your wallet?,” I don’t know what I would tell them, but I don’t think I would answer “the emptiness in my wallet is gone.” But that’s what we say when we define baptism as the sacrament that takes away original sin. That definition only emphasizes the emptiness and not the fullness. It doesn’t reflect the blessings that suddenly fill us at baptism: the blessings of God’s life, of being children of God, the blessings of the Holy Spirit, the blessing of belonging to the family of God, the blessing and hope of sharing in eternal happiness with God. In Jesus there was no emptiness. In him dwells the fullness of the divinity (Col. 2,9) as St. Paul tells us. He was, from all eternity, God’s beloved Son. Jesus had no need of baptism in any form. In this respect Jesus’ baptism by John made no change in him as the sacrament of baptism did for us. Jesus baptism by John provides an occasion for us to reflect on our own baptism and the grace that it brought us.
Now I want to describe one way in which Jesus’ baptism by John and the sacrament of baptism we received are similar. They are similar in that they are both a commitment. John’s baptism was a public commitment people made to live holy lives and to prepare for the coming of God’s kingdom. Jesus, in being baptized, was publicly committing himself to do God’s will and to preach and build the kingdom of God. Baptism is that for us too. We are committed in a public event to belong to God, to be God’s obedient child, God’s lover, God’s representative. It’s something like declaring one’s candidacy, not for public office, but for the office of Christian in the world. Most likely someone made that commitment for us, most probably our parents. They made that commitment for us with the intention of directing us in God’s ways. Eventually, we have to make that commitment our own if our baptism is going to mean anything at all. On this feast of the baptism of Jesus, we have a good opportunity to recommit ourselves to Jesus. The effects and blessings of baptism remain with us as long as we do not turn our hearts away from the Father who long ago chose us to be his son or daughter in the sacrament. In this way Jesus’ baptism by John is very much like our own, not a private, secret event but a public, open declaration of our commitment to love and serve God and others as Jesus, the perfect Son of God did. Amen.
R. God introduces His
servant Isaiah 42: 1-4
God is pleased with
His servant —
No one ever suspected
until after Jesus'
death and resurrection
that this first reading
was Jesus the
Redeemer of the Lord
Fr. Joe says
Season of Epiphany
ends today with the
Baptism of the Lord —
Tomorrow we begin
ordinary times —
St. John the Baptist
baptized Jesus in the Jordon —
John the Baptist told his
followers — He must increase —
I must decrease
Speaking of our baptism
Baptism is more than removing
We are to live as an obedient
child of God —
We are committed in baptism
to be a faithful obedient
child of God —
The holy water font — when we come into
reminds us of our baptism —
we bless ourselves with
holy water —
We have to choose to live out
our baptism —
We must make a commitment
to follow God's will —
I confess to Almighty God, to blessed Mary ever Virgin, to blessed Michael the Archangel, to blessed John the Baptist, to the holy Apostles Peter and Paul, and to all the saints, that I have sinned exceedingly in thought, word, and deed, through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault. Therefore, I beseech blessed Mary ever Virgin, blessed Michael the Archangel, blessed John the Baptist, the holy Apostles Peter and Paul, and all the saints, to pray to the Lord our God for me.
We pray that we will live out our
baptismal call —
We pray for justice in this world —
that men will be obedient to
God the Father —
Jesus showed us how He was obedient
to His Father —
We want to love our Father —
to be one with Jesus —
to live in the Spirit of God —
To know the Father, Son and Holy Spirit
live in our graced baptized soul —
We thank God for the gift of
In baptism our knowing and
loving capacity is elevated —
Help us God to be better lovers
and know You more —
Help us to know the gift of
the Father, Son and Holy Spirit
dwelling in our graced
baptized soul —
The mystery of Faith
Lord by Your cross and resurrection
you have set us free
You are the Savior of the world —
Our Father, Who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.
Sing: Of the Father's Love Begotten
Sing: What Star Is This
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Homilies by Fr. Joe Robinson
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