The Lord remembered Hannah, and she gave birth to Samuel.
A reading from the first Book of Samuel (1 Samuel 1:9-20)
In those days: After they had eaten and drunk in Shiloh, Hannah rose. Now Eli the priest was sitting on the seat beside the doorpost of the temple of the Lord. She was deeply distressed and prayed to the Lord, and wept bitterly. And she vowed a vow and said, “O Lord of hosts, if you will indeed look on the affliction of your maidservant, and remember me, and not forget your maidservant, but will give to your maidservant a son, then I will give him to the Lord all the days of his life, and no razor shall touch his head.” As she continued praying before the Lord, Eli observed her mouth. Hannah was speaking in her heart; only her lips moved, and her voice was not heard; therefore Eli took her to be a drunken woman. And Eli said to her, “How long will you be drunken? Put away your wine from you.” But Hannah answered, “No, my lord, I am a woman sorely troubled; I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I have been pouring out my soul before the Lord. Do not regard your maidservant as a base woman, for all along I have been speaking out of my great anxiety and vexation.” Then Eli answered, “Go in peace, and the God of Israel grant your petition which you have made to him.” And she said, “Let your maidservant find favour in your eyes.” Then the woman went her way and ate, and her countenance was no longer sad. They rose early in the morning and worshipped before the LORD; then they went back to their house at Ramah. And Elkanah knew Hannah his wife, and the Lord remembered her; and in due time Hannah conceived and bore a son, and she called his name Samuel, for she said, “I have asked him of the Lord.”
The word of the Lord.
RESPONSORIAL PSALM 1 Samuel 2:1.4-5.6-7.8abcd (R. see la)
R/. My heart exults in the Lord, my Saviour.
My heart exults in the Lord;
my strength is exalted in the Lord.
My mouth derides my enemies,
because I rejoice in your salvation. R/.
The bows of the mighty are broken, but the feeble gird on strength.
Those who were full have hired themselves out for bread,
but those who were hungry have ceased to hunger.
The barren has borne seven,
but she who has many children is forlorn. R/.
R/. My heart exults in the Lord, my Saviour.
The Lord kills and brings to life;
he brings down to Sheol and raises up.
The Lord makes poor and makes rich;
he brings low, he also exalts. R/.
He raises up the poor from the dust;
he lifts the needy from the dung heap,
to make them sit with princes
and inherit a seat of honour. R/.
ALLELUIA 1 Thessalonians 2:13
Alleluia. Accept the word of God, not as the word of men, but as what it really is, the word of God. Alleluia.
“He taught them as one who had authority.”
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Mark (Mark l :21b-28)
[In the city of Capernaum,] Jesus entered the synagogue on the sabbath and taught. And they were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one who had authority, and not as the scribes. And immediately there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out, “What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God.” But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent, and come out of him!” And the unclean spirit, convulsing him and crying with a loud voice, came out of him. And they were all amazed, so that they questioned among themselves, saying, “What is this? A new teaching! With authority he commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey him.” And at once his fame spread everywhere throughout all the surrounding region of Galilee.
The Gospel of the Lord
As we enter into this First Week in Ordinary Time, we are given the image of Jesus teaching in the synagogue. And as He teaches, it’s clear that there is something special about Him. He is one who teaches with a new authority. This statement in Mark’s Gospel contrasts Jesus with the scribes who apparently teach without this unmistakable authority. This statement should not go unnoticed. Jesus exercised His authority in His teaching not so much because He wanted to, but because He had to. This is who He is. He is God and when He speaks He speaks with the authority of God.
He speaks in such a way that people know His words have transforming meaning. His words effect change in people’s lives. This should invite each one of us to reflect upon the authority of Jesus in our lives. Do you notice His authority spoken to you? Do you see His words, spoken in Sacred Scripture, having an effect upon your life? Reflect, today, upon this image of Jesus teaching in the synagogue. Know that the “synagogue” represents our own souls and that Jesus desires to be there speaking to us with authority. Let His words sink in and change our lives.
Together we pray: My authoritative Lord, I open myself to You and Your voice of authority. Help me to allow You to speak with clarity and truth. As You do, help me to be open to allowing You to change my life. Our Merciful Father, I trust in YOU, that YOU alone will heal our illnesses and uncertainties, and set us free. May the souls of our faithful departed brethren rest in perfect peace, Amen. Lord, I thank YOU for giving us a wonderful, fruitful, and blessed Tuesday, amen.