Gospel for June 17, 2012, Sunday, 11th Sunday in Ordinary Time
1st Reading: Ezk 17:22-24
Lord, it is good to give thanks to you
Thus says Yahweh: “At the top of the cedar I will take one of its uppermost branches, a tender twig and plant it. On a lofty, massive mountain, on a high mountain of Israel I will plant it. It will produce branches and bear fruit and become a magnificent cedar. Birds of all kinds will nest in it and find shelter in its branches. And all the trees of the field shall know that I am Yahweh, I who bring down the lofty tree and make the lowly tree tall. I will make the tree that is full of sap wither and the dry tree bloom. I, Yahweh, have spoken and this will I do.”
2nd Reading: 2 Corinthians 5:6-10
Christ lives in me.
So we feel confident always. We know that while living in the body, we are exiled from the Lord, living by the faith, without seeing; but we dare to think that we would rather be away from the body to go and live with the Lord. So, whether we have to keep this house or lose it, we only wish to please the Lord. Anyway we all have to appear before the tribunal of Christ for each one to receive what he deserves for his good or evil deeds in the present life.
Gospel: Mark 4:26-34
The mustard seed.
Jesus also said, “In the kingdom of God it is like this. A man scatters seed upon the soil. Whether he is asleep or awake, be it day or night, the seed sprouts and grows, he knows not how. The soil produces of itself; first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. And when it is ripe for harvesting they take the sickle for the cutting: the time for harvest has come.”
Jesus also said, “What is the kingdom of God like? To what shall we compare it? It is like a mustard seed which, when sown, is the smallest of all the seeds scattered upon the soil. But once sown, it grows up and becomes the largest of the plants in the garden and even grows branches so big that the birds of the air can take shelter in its shade.”
Jesus used many such stories or parables, to proclaim the word to them in a way they would be able to understand. He would not teach them without parables; but privately to his disciples he explained everything.
• Mark 4:26–34: Jesus preaches in parables. The explanation of the parable of the sower probably comes from the Markan church. There will be a good harvest even if some seed does not produce. Disciples must reflect in their lives what they believe. Faith grows silently and may start small but can eventually become great.
• The parable of the sower reflects human life. Everyone faces obstacles in the life of faith. Some days are fruitful (thirty, sixty, a hundredfold) and other days are not. Think about what you believe and how you live your faith.
• On a good day, thank God. On a poor day, ask for forgiveness and pray to the Holy Spirit to make the next day more faith-filled.
• Each night examine your conscience on the day that has passed.
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