This Sunday


January 23, 2022

Gospel: (Luke 4:14-21)

Jesus came to Nazareth, where he had grown up, and went according to his custom into the synagogue on the Sabbath day. He stood up to read and was handed a scroll and found the passage where it was written: "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring glad tidings to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, and to proclaim a year acceptable to the Lord." Rolling up the scroll, he handed it back to the attendant and sat down, and the eyes of all in the synagogue looked intently at him. He said to them, "Today this Scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing."


We would guess that Jesus introduced a long, pregnant pause, before he said what the synagogue people could hardly expect: "Today, this Scripture is being fulfilled in your hearing." We are still in the time when the scroll has been set aside, when all eyes turn to Jesus, and there is a pregnant pause. Now we - our own lives - fill the meaning of the pregnant pause. We can do so because, like Jesus, in our baptism we also have been anointed with the Spirit. And so, we are called to look for the poor, captive, blind, and oppressed among us. We don't have to look very far! "Today this passage has been fulfilled" is now true only when we ourselves respond to those around us who need a nourishing, strengthening, joyful word. (Living Liturgy, p.46)

Vincentian Meditation:

In light of Vincent's regular practice of taking the imitation of Jesus Christ as the model of behavior, the saint, in Jesus' manner, chose the words of this Gospel: "He has sent me to bring good news to the poor," as the motto of his life and ministry. Jesus modeled doing before teaching. Accordingly, Vincent noted that Jesus first integrated "fully into his life every type of virtue." That was his preparation, after which our Lord, then went on to teach, by preaching the good news of salvation to poor people, and by passing on to his apostles and disciples what they needed to know to become guides for others. As followers of Vincent, we must imitate Christ the Lord, first…imitate his virtues and then we can go out in service to the poor. (Melito, St. Vincent -Windows on His Vision, p. 45)

Discussion: (Share your thoughts after a moment of silence)

       How is this Scripture passage from Luke being fulfilled in your life today?

Closing Prayer:

       To the indigent and those who are in despair,
              -Lord, send us out to bring good news to the poor.
       To the abandoned poor of the inner city,
              -Lord, send us out to bring good news to the poor.
       To the captive, blind and oppressed among us,
              -Lord, send us out to bring good news to the poor. Amen

Gospel Reflection

We gratefully acknowledge the United States National Council of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul for these documents.