Readings and Reflection for February 18, Saturday of the Sixth Week in Ordinary Time

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FIRST READING
“By faith we understand that the world was created by the word of God.”
A reading from the Letter to the Hebrews 11: 1-7

Brethren: Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the men of old received divine approval. By faith we understand that the world was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was made out of things which do not appear. By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain, through which he received approval as righteous, God bearing witness by accepting his gifts; he died, but through his faith he is still speaking. By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death; and he was not found, because God had taken him. Now before he was taken he was attested as having pleased God. And without faith it is impossible to please him. For whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, took heed and constructed an ark for the saving of his household; by this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness which comes by faith

The word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm 145:2-3.4-5.10-11 (R. see 1b)
R/. I will bless your name, O Lord, forever.

I will bless you day after day,
And praise your name forever and ever.
The Lord is great and highly to be praised;
His greatness cannot be measured. R/.

Age to age shall proclaim your works,
shall declare your mighty deeds.
They will tell of your great glory and splendour,
and recount your wonderful works. R/.

R/. I will bless your name, O Lord, forever.

All your works shall thank you, O Lord,
and all your faithful ones bless you.
They shall speak of the glory of your reign,
and declare your mighty deeds. R/.

ALLELUIA Mark 9:6
Alleluia. The heavens opened, and the Father’s voice was heard: “This is my beloved Son; listen to him.” Alleluia

GOSPEL
“He was transfigured before them.”
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Mark 9:2-13

At that time: Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain apart by themselves; and he was transfigured before them, and his garments became glistening, intensely white, as no fuller on earth could bleach them. And there appeared to them Elijah with Moses; and they were talking to Jesus. And Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is well that we are here; let us make three booths, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah.” For he did not know what to say, for they were exceedingly afraid. And a cloud overshadowed them, and a voice came out of the cloud. “This is my beloved Son; listen to him.” And suddenly looking around they no longer saw any one with them but Jesus only. And as they were coming down the mountain, he charged them to tell no one what they had seen, until the Son of man should have risen from the dead. So they kept the matter to themselves, questioning what the rising from the dead meant. And they asked him, “Why do the scribes say that first Elijah must come?” And he said to them, “Elijah does come first to restore all things; and how is it written of the Son of man, that he should suffer many things and be treated with contempt? But I tell you that Elijah has come, and they did to him whatever they pleased, as it is written of him.”

The Gospel of the Lord.

TODAY’S REFLECTION
On mount Tabor, God confirms that, what is most important in our relationship with Jesus is to ‘listen to him’ (Mark 9:7). Listening to Jesus and following his directions are key ingredients for us Christians. As peter proposes, we may build three tents on the mountain, giving one to the law, one to the prophets, and another to the fulfillment of the laws and the prophets but if we fail to listen to Jesus our tents will be useless. What will however make us listen to him and follow him is faith. This faith is described by the author of the letter to the Hebrews as ‘the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen’ (Heb. 11:1). The examples of Abel, Enoch and Noah are placed before us as men who, though they did not understand, yet loved, trusted and obeyed God. Let us take Noah for example; he listens to God by building the ark and going into the ark at God’s command. He has no doubt as to what God was about to do; he has complete trust and obedience. Despite so much noise in our world today, we must keep making efforts to listen to God. The voice of the world may be so loud and pleasing but the voice of God even though it is still and gentle, will always be the best voice. Let us have firm faith in God, listen always to him and surely he will lead us on the right path.

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