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RELIGION LITURGY AND LIFE

5th Sunday of Ordinary Time C

5sunOT

Here we are fast approaching Lent. Believe it or not next Wednesday is Ash Wednesday. We move forward as the Palm Branches left aside from last year are burned for the ashes and the Green vestments of Ordinary time give way to the Lenten purple. Here we go again comes to mind as it seems no time since we celebrated the start of the Lenten Fast in 2012. But whether we like it or not Lent starts on Wednesday and there will be much said about what we might do or not do   in the days ahead. That said back to today and our readings for this Sunday:

Why did Jesus perform the miracle of the great catch of fish? No doubt the great crowd of people who had pressed upon Jesus had something to do with this miracle. They were very hungry for God and were eager to hear his word are we that hungry when it comes to our weekly observance of our faith?

Jesus wanted to use this occasion to teach his disciples an important lesson.  Although Simon was wearied from a night of fruitless toil, he nonetheless pressed upon Jesus for his word of command: At your word I will let down the nets. When you meet disappointment and failure, do you press upon the Lord, like Simon, to hear his word and to receive his command? This incident tells us an important truth about how God works in and through us for his glory. God expects of us greater things than we can do by ourselves. When we cooperate in his works, we accomplish far beyond what we can do on our own for those who have faith all things are possible. When people respond to God’s word with faith and obedience they are changed and made “a new creation” in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). God chooses ordinary people, like you and me, as his ambassadors and he uses the ordinary circumstances of our daily lives and work situations to draw others into his kingdom. Our lives in Christ depend upon an unlimited trust in the Lord, following his words with energy and hope even when his will for us leads into uncharted waters, when he commands that we “put out into the deep”,

even those well-plumbed depths which have in the past yielded up for us only empty nets will bear fruit in plenty. The readings today are all about vocation; the vocations of Isaiah, Paul and the Apostles. Each one of us has a vocation each one of us has been given the task of proclaiming the Good News in our daily lives, a calling from the Lord. Each one of us is commissioned through our baptism to be an Apostle of Christ in the world. Some are called to the very particular service of Priesthood or religious life but many others are called to the vocations of married or single life. There are so many other vocations I can’t think of them all but all of them have so much value in leading people to God. Whether we are helping in a food pantry in our local community, participating in mission trips across the world, or living amongst another culture for many years, it is the love for the other that is at the very heart and soul of the Christian notion of mission.

Having faith trusting in God, as Paul states in Corinthians, “We have such a hope, we act with great boldness.” We should have that boldness that comes from the realization that we are all Sons and Daughters of God and that God loves us all more than we can  imagine.  We are called, we are sent, to lead people to God.  Every action of our lives has purpose not just for ourselves but as beacons of hope for those who are seeking the Lord. The family Motto of my family is Light in the darkness we that is all of us are called to be the spiritual light that is meant to be set on hilltops so all can see.  We pray today for the courage to respond to the Lord’s summons to be his apostles with every action of our lives especially as we begin our observance of Lent during the Year of Faith.

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