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Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.

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Homilies :: Latin Rite
Saturday of the 4th Week in the Ordinary Time Download This Homily

February 9, 2019

Saturday of the 4th Week in the Ordinary Time

 

Hebrews 13:15-17, 20-21 ;

Psalm 23:1-6;

Gospel MK 6:30-34


The Apostles gathered together with Jesus
and reported all they had done and taught.
He said to them,
"Come away by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while." 
People were coming and going in great numbers,
and they had no opportunity even to eat.
So they went off in the boat by themselves to a deserted place.
People saw them leaving and many came to know about it.
They hastened there on foot from all the towns
and arrived at the place before them.

When Jesus disembarked and saw the vast crowd,
his heart was moved with pity for them,
for they were like sheep without a shepherd;
and he began to teach them many things.

 

Sheep without Shepherd

 

Today’s Gospel describes the returning of apostles from their mission and their reporting of all that they had done and taught. While the success of Jesus' apostles loomed large for the future of the mission, as we heard yesterday the death of John at the hands of Herod loomed larger.  So we are given a hint at what will be the result of the mission of disciples.  Their mission and the mission of Jesus will be successful, but they and Jesus will have to face the same consequences which john the Baptist had faced.  Jesus' immediate reaction was to secure a private place for his disciples to rest.


As Jesus and disciples got out of the boat, a large crowd waited for them.  Jesus had compassion for them because they were ‘sheep without a shepherd’. The metaphor of Israel as ‘sheep without a shepherd’ derives from Hebrew scripture.  Israel needs a shepherd. Shepherd was a common image for a ruler, a king and probably hints at Jesus as Messiah. Rulers, governments, have a responsibility of care. This image of ‘sheep without shepherd’ discloses the vulnerability of the people. The emotion Jesus has towards them is ‘compassion’.  Jesus expressed it by offering the leadership of teaching. The term ‘sheep without shepherd’ in the Old Testament is used in scenes in which God is against the abusive shepherds, who no longer cared for their sheep (e.g. Ezekiel 34/2-5, Zachariah 11/4-17).  Therefore this reference, sheep without shepherd, is a critique of Herod (in yesterday’s reading), where he held feasts for ‘the leaders of Galilee’ while the ordinary people were left out.  And so we have now in Jesus a good shepherd who has compassion for the people, and who spends time in teaching then and who will feed them later.  Are we behaving like the good shepherd or are we walking in the shoes of the Herods?


Fr .Cyril Kuttiyanickal CMI


Homilies Navchetana Apps, the first of its kind is produced and published by Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India to assist the clergy to preach the World of God and also as a handy spiritual resource for the people of God to reflect on the daily spiritual passages at their convenience. You can download this on your Android phone from Google play and you can see the Gospel reflections of the whole year. The size of this app is just 2.5 MB. We welcome your suggestions and contributions to server you better.

May God Bless you

Fr. James M L CMI

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Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.


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