Sixteenth Week in Ordinary Time
Gospel: Mt 12: 46-50
While Jesus was speaking to the crowds, his mother and his brothers appeared outside, wishing to speak with him. Someone told him, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, asking to speak with you.” But he said in reply to the one who told him, “Who is my mother? Who are my brothers?” And stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers. For whoever does the will of my heavenly Father is my brother, and sister, and mother.”
WE ARE SEPARATED THROUGH BAPTISM: One could imagine how surprised the children of Israel must have been when they saw the marvel that the Lord had worked before their very eyes. They had walked on dry land but the chariots and the charioteers of Pharaoh’s army perished in the water. This was the ultimate separation of the Israelites and the Egyptians for indeed the Egyptians were not seen again. Jesus in the Gospel says that those who follow the will of His father are His brothers and sisters. Just like the Israelites went through the Red Sea and were separated from the Egyptians, we are also separated by God through our faith in Christ and baptism. We become the family of God and Jesus speaks about us as His brothers and sisters free from the bondage of sin and death.
PRAYER: O Lord, Israel saw the marvel you worked and feared you, grant us who have witnessed your love in Christ, never to lose our faith in you.
THE EXTENDED FAMILY OF JESUS: Jesus makes use of the occasion of the arrival of his mother and relations to speak about a new family of believers. Everyone who listens to him and does the will of his Father is part of the family of God. He invites people to come to him and be part of the Kingdom of God. He establishes as strong a bond with his followers, as that of a mother, father, brother or sister. This relationship is not reserved for a few; every person has access to the membership in God’s family. Let us listen to the Word and live according to the will of our heavenly Father. We belong to God’s family and our faith connects us with people all over the world. Mary is the Mother of this large family.