15TH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
Psalter: Week 2 / (Green/Red)
St. Apollinarius, bishop & martyr
Ps 105:1 & 5, 8-9, 24-25, 26-27
The Lord remembers his covenant for ever.
1st Reading: Ex 3: 13-20
Moses answered God, “If I go to the Israelites and say to them: ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ they will ask me: ‘What is his name?’ What shall I answer them?“
God said to Moses, “I AM WHO AM. This is what you will say to the sons of Israel: ‘I AM sent me to you.“ God then said to Moses, “You will say to the Israelites: ‘YAHWEH, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob, has sent me.’ That will be my name forever, and by this name they shall call upon me for all generations to come.
Go! Call together the elders of Israel and say to them, ‘Yahweh, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob appeared to me and said: I have seen and taken account of how the Egyptians have treated you, and I mean to bring you out of all this oppression in Egypt and take you to the land of the Canaanites, a land flowing with milk and honey.’
The elders of Israel will listen to you and, with them, you shall go to the palace of the king of Egypt and say to him: ‘The God of the Hebrews, Yahweh, has met with us. Now let us go a three days’ journey into the wilderness to sacrifice to Yahweh our God.’
I well know that the king of the Egyptians will not allow you to go unless he is forced to do so. I will therefore stretch out my hand and strike Egypt in extraordinary ways, after which he will let you go.
Gospel: Mt 11:28-30
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble of heart; and you will find rest. For my yoke is easy; and my burden is light.“
Weariness is a common experience for all of us-“poor, banished children of Eve… mourning and weeping in this vale of tears.“ This seems to be constitutive of our sinful human condition. In this life we are sometimes burdened by the “cross“ that we have to bear, i.e., the tasks and responsibilities that come with the vocation or way of life we have embraced, as well as the pains and sufferings we have to endure in the realization of our mission in life. At other times we are burdened by our sins, guilt, fear, hopelessness and despair.
To those who experience the burdens of earthly existence Jesus offers rest and a means to overcome weariness. “Take my yoke upon your shoulders and learn from me...“ Some have suggested that Christ’s yoke is that of love. It is love itself that effectively transforms our attitude towards our tasks and responsibilities. It is love that changes the way we look at pain and suffering. When we are full of love we are capable of accepting the cross for the sake of those we love, as Jesus did. When our hearts are filled with love we no longer find our obligations burdensome but embraced willingly and joyfully.
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Biblical Texts are taken from Christian Community Bible, Catholic Pastoral Edition (57th Edition) The New English Translation for the ROMAN MISSAL
With permission from the EPISCOPAL COMMISION ON LITURGY of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines
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