Fulfilled in your hearing

01-30-2022Weekly Reflection© J. S. Paluch Company

The “fulfilled in your hearing” statement of Jesus today is also the conclusion of last week’s Gospel, with the words of Isaiah about the breadth of God’s mercy and justice at its heart. The response of the crowd in the synagogue is united: all are amazed, but all likewise ask if he’s not merely the son of Joseph the humble carpenter. Jesus calls them out for seeming to think that he ought to be doing his ministry only locally, and - selfishly - only for them. (After all, they know where he comes from!)



01-23-2022Weekly Reflection© J. S. Paluch Company

Community is important. Community is essential. Community is crucial. This message is the foundation of today’s readings from Nehemiah, Corinthians, and Luke. Ezra’s reading of the scroll is done in front of the community, including—a radical act at the time—women, and children old enough to understand, groups usually not counted among those hearing God’s promise proclaimed. Community is important. The mystical Body of Christ, like the human body, functions best and most fully when all members are playing the role for which they were meant.


Broken Silence

01-16-2022Weekly Reflection© J. S. Paluch Company

“For Pete’s sake will you kids be quiet?” This question, no doubt, has passed the lips of numerous parents through the years. It’s tempting to speculate as to who, exactly, was instructing Isaiah to be quiet. Neighbors? Fellow prophets? Family? No matter. Isaiah says firmly that for the sake of Jerusalem and Zion he will not be silent. Conversely, in the familiar passage in today’s Gospel reading, Mary chides her son to break his silence, to save the wedding soon to run out of wine.


A Model for our Prayer Life

01-09-2022Weekly Reflection© J. S. Paluch Company

The Advent/Christmas cycle that began on November 28 ends with the Baptism of the Lord. We likely have an image in our minds (based on details from the Gospels and works of art) of what that scene looked like. We might wonder, “Who else was there and who wasn’t?” No disciples were present because Jesus had not yet begun his ministry. They would have to wait until the Transfiguration to hear a similar message.



01-02-2022Weekly Reflection© J. S. Paluch Company

Gifts are everywhere at this time of year. Christmas gifts. Hostess gifts. Hidden gifts. Wrong-size gifts. Unexpected gifts. Unwanted gifts. Unreciprocated gifts. And in today’s readings we hear about even more gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh. But we know intuitively (or, one hopes, eventually!) that gifts are symbols of something much deeper and less tangible. The gift of God’s Son is, of course, at the heart of our Christmas festivities.