December 19, 2021

Fourth Sunday of Advent

READINGS FOR THE COMING WEEK
  • First reading
    • Micah 5:2-5a
  • Psalm
    • Luke 1:46b-55 or Psalm 80:1-7
  • Second reading
    • Hebrews 10:5-10
  • Gospel
    • Luke 1:39-45, (46-55)

The gospel from Luke:
In those days Mary set out and went with haste to a Judean town in the hill country, where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the child leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and exclaimed with a loud cry, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.

The Visitation .
Brother Eric

And why has this happened to me, that the mother of my Lord comes to me? For as soon as I heard the sound of your greeting, the child in my womb leaped for joy. And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her by the Lord.”

And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant. Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name.

His mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts. He has brought down the powerful from their thrones,and lifted up the lowly; he has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty. He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, according to the promise he made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.”

December 12, 2021

Third Sunday of Advent

READINGS FOR TH E COMING WEEK
  • First reading
    • Zephaniah 3:14-20
  • Psalm
    • Isaiah 12:2-6
  • Second reading
    • Philippians 4:4-7
  • Gospel
    • Luke 3:7-18

The gospel from Luke:
John said to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear fruits worthy of repentance. Do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our ancestor’; for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. Even now the ax is lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.” And the crowds asked him, “What then should we do?”

John the Baptist Preaching:
ca. 1735-1745
Zuccarelli, Francesco
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
Painting
Glasgow, United Kingdom

In reply he said to them, “Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; and whoever has food must do likewise.” Even tax collectors came to be baptized, and they asked him, “Teacher, what should we do?” He said to them, “Collect no more than the amount prescribed for you.” Soldiers also asked him, “And we, what should we do?” He said to them, “Do not extort money from anyone by threats or false accusation, and be satisfied with your wages.”

As the people were filled with expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, whether he might be the Messiah, John answered all of them by saying, “I baptize you with water; but one who is more powerful than I is coming; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.

His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.” So, with many other exhortations, he proclaimed the good news to the people.

December 5, 2021

Second Sunday of Advent

READINGS FOR THE COMING WEEK
  • First reading
    • Baruch 5:1-9 or Malachi 3:1-4
  • Psalm
    • Luke 1:68-79
  • Second reading
    • Philippians 1:3-11
  • Gospel
    • Luke 3:1-6
John the Baptist in the Wilderness .
Geertgen, tot Sint Jans
approximately 1460-1495

The gospel from Luke:
In the fifteenth year of the reign of Emperor Tiberius, when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, and Herod was ruler of Galilee, and his brother Philip ruler of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias ruler of Abilene, during the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness.

He went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins, as it is written in the book of the words of the prophet Isaiah, “The voice of one crying out in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.

Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways made smooth; and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.'”

November 28, 2021

First Sunday in Advent

READINGS FOR THE COMING WEEK
  • First reading
    • Jeremiah 33:14-16
  • Psalm
    • Psalm 25:1-10
  • Second reading
    • 1 Thessalonians 3:9-13
  • Gospel
    • Luke 21:25-36
Tempest
Jean and Alexander Heard Libraries
Vanderbilt University

The gospel from Luke:
Jesus said “There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars, and on the earth distress among nations confused by the roaring of the sea and the waves. People will faint from fear and foreboding of what is coming upon the world, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then they will see ‘the Son of Man coming in a cloud’ with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to take place, stand up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”

Then he told them a parable: “Look at the fig tree and all the trees; as soon as they sprout leaves you can see for yourselves and know that summer is already near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that the kingdom of God is near.

Truly I tell you, this generation will not pass away until all things have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. Be on guard so that your hearts are not weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of this life, and that day catch you unexpectedly, like a trap. For it will come upon all who live on the face of the whole earth.

Be alert at all times, praying that you may have the strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.”

November 21, 2021

Twenty-Sixth Sunday after Pentecost

READINGS FOR THE COMING WEEK
  • First reading and Psalm
    • 2 Samuel 23:1-7
    • Psalm 132:1-12, (13-18)
  • Alternate First reading and Psalm
    • Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14
    • Psalm 93
  • Second reading
    • Revelation 1:4b-8
  • Gospel
    • John 18:33-37

The gospel from John:
Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?”

Jesus before Pilate, First Interview
Tissot, James, 1836-1902
Jean and Alexander Heard Libraries
Vanderbilt University

Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.”

Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”

November 14, 2021

Twenty-Fifth Sunday after Pentecost

READINGS FOR THE COMING WEEK
  • First reading and Psalm
    • 1 Samuel 1:4-20
    • 1 Samuel 2:1-10
  • Alternate First reading and Psalm
    • Daniel 12:1-3
    • Psalm 16
  • Second reading
    • Hebrews 10:11-14, (15-18), 19-25
  • Gospel
    • Mark 13:1-8

The gospel from Mark:
As Jesus came out of the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Look, Teacher, what large stones and what large buildings!” Then Jesus asked him, “Do you see these great buildings? Not one stone will be left here upon another; all will be thrown down.”

When he was sitting on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple, Peter, James, John, and Andrew asked him privately, “Tell us, when will this be, and what will be the sign that all these things are about to be accomplished?”

Then Jesus began to say to them, “Beware that no one leads you astray. Many will come in my name and say, ‘I am he!’ and they will lead many astray. When you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed; this must take place, but the end is still to come. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; there will be earthquakes in various places; there will be famines. This is but the beginning of the birthpangs.

Alpha and Omega
Eugenio Hansen 2010
Drawing
The letters are written in a style called “uncial”,
a script commonly used from
the 4th to the 8th centuries AD
by Latin and Greek scribes

http://diglib.library.vanderbilt.edu

November 7, 2021

Twenty-Fourth Sunday after Pentecost

READINGS FOR THE COMING WEEK
  • First reading and Psalm
    • Ruth 3:1-5; 4:13-17
    • Psalm 127
  • Alternate First reading and Psalm
    • 1 Kings 17:8-16
    • Psalm 146
  • Second reading
    • Hebrews 9:24-28
  • Gospel
    • Mark 12:38-44

The gospel from Mark:
As Jesus taught, he said, “Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces, and to have the best seats in the synagogues and places of honor at banquets! They devour widows’ houses and for the sake of appearance say long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation.”

Widow’s Mite
The Life of Our Lord Jesus Christ project
chronicled the entire life of Jesus
as recorded in the New Testament
as close as possible to an eyewitness account of the life of Jesus.” :
1886-1894 Tissot, James
Brooklyn Museum New York, NY

He sat down opposite the treasury, and watched the crowd putting money into the treasury. Many rich people put in large sums. A poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which are worth a penny.

Then he called his disciples and said to them, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the treasury. For all of them have contributed out of their abundance; but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.”

October 31, 2021

Twenty-Third Sunday after Pentecost

READINGS FOR THE COMING WEEK
  • First reading and Psalm
    • Ruth 1:1-18
    • Psalm 146
  • Alternate First reading and Psalm
    • Deuteronomy 6:1-9
    • Psalm 119:1-8
  • Second reading
    • Hebrews 9:11-14
  • Gospel
    • Mark 12:28-34

The gospel from Mark:
One of the scribes came near the disciples and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that Jesus answered them well, he asked him,

“Which commandment is the first of all?” Jesus answered, “The first is, ‘Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one; you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’

The second is this, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

Thou Shalt Love the Lord Thy God…¬†.
Schnell, Sister Maurice, 1839-1902
Jean and Alexander Heard Libraries
Vanderbilt University

Then the scribe said to him, “You are right, Teacher; you have truly said that ‘he is one, and besides him there is no other’; and ‘to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the strength,’ and ‘to love one’s neighbor as oneself,’ –this is much more important than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.”

When Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” After that no one dared to ask him any question.

October 24, 201

Twenty-Second Sunday after Pentecost

READINGS FOR THE COMING WEEK
  • First reading and Psalm
    • Job 42:1-6, 10-17
    • Psalm 34:1-8, (19-22)
  • Alternate First reading and Psalm
    • Jeremiah 31:7-9
    • Psalm 126
  • Second reading
    • Hebrews 7:23-28
  • Gospel
    • Mark 10:46-52

The gospel from Mark:
They came to Jericho. As Jesus and his disciples and a large crowd were leaving Jericho, Bartimaeus son of Timaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside. When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Many sternly ordered him to be quiet, but he cried out even more loudly, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”

Healing of the blind man at Jericho
Jean and Alexander Heard Libraries
Vanderbilt University

Jesus stood still and said, “Call him here.” And they called the blind man, saying to him, “Take heart; get up, he is calling you.” So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. Then Jesus said to him, “What do you want me to do for you?” The blind man said to him, “My teacher, let me see again.”

Jesus said to him, “Go; your faith has made you well.” Immediately he regained his sight and followed him on the way.

October 17, 2021

Twenty-First Sunday after Pentecost

READINGS FOR THE COMING WEEK
  • First reading and Psalm
    • Job 38:1-7, (34-41)
    • Psalm 104:1-9, 24, 35c
  • Alternate First reading and Psalm
    • Isaiah 53:4-12
    • Psalm 91:9-16
  • Second reading
    • Hebrews 5:1-10
  • Gospel
    • Mark 10:35-45

The First Reading from Job:
Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind:

Lord Answers Job Out of the Whirlwind .
Blake, William, 1757-1827

“Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Gird up your loins like a man, I will question you, and you shall declare to me.

“Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding.
Who determined its measurements–surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it?
On what were its bases sunk, or who laid its cornerstone when the morning stars sang together and all the heavenly beings shouted for joy?

“Can you lift up your voice to the clouds, so that a flood of waters may cover you?
Can you send forth lightnings, so that they may go and say to you, ‘Here we are’?
Who has put wisdom in the inward parts, or given understanding to the mind?
Who has the wisdom to number the clouds? Or who can tilt the waterskins of the heavens, when the dust runs into a mass and the clods cling together?

“Can you hunt the prey for the lion, or satisfy the appetite of the young lions, when they crouch in their dens, or lie in wait in their covert?

“Who provides for the raven its prey, when its young ones cry to God, and wander about for lack of food?

The gospel from Mark:
James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came forward to Jesus and said to him, “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you.” And he said to them, “What is it you want me to do for you?” And they said to him, “Grant us to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your glory.”

But Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?” They replied, “We are able.”

Then Jesus said to them, “The cup that I drink you will drink; and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized; but to sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared.” When the ten heard this, they began to be angry with James and John.

So Jesus called them and said to them, “You know that among the Gentiles those whom they recognize as their rulers lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. But it is not so among you; but whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all.

For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.”