FIRST READING
A reading from the book of Hosea (Hosea 11:1, 3-4, 8c-9)

Thus says the Lord: When Israel was a child, I loved him, and out of Egypt I called my son.  Yet it was I who taught Ephriam to walk, I took them up in my arms; but they did not know that I healed them, I led them with cords of compassion, with the bands of love, and I became to them as one who raises an infant to his cheeks, and I bent down to them and fed them. My heart recoils within me, my compassion grows warm and tender. I will not execute my fierce anger, I will not again destroy Ephraim; for I am God and not man, the Holy One in your midst, and I will not comet to destroy.

The word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM  Isaiah 12:2-3, 4bcde, 5-6 (R.3)
R/. With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.

“Behold, God is my salvation;
I will trust, and will not be afraid;
for the Lord God is my strength and my song,
and he has become my salvation,”
With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation. R/.

“Give thanks to the Lord,
call upon his name;
make known his deeds among the nations,
proclaim that his name is exalted.” R/.

R/. With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.

“Sing praise to the Lord, for he has done gloriously;
let this be known in all the earth.
Shout, and sing for joy, O inhabitant of Zion,
for great in your midst is the Holy One of Isreal.” R/.

SECOND READING          
A reading from Ephesians 3:8-12, 14-19

Brethren: To me, though I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to make all men see what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God who created all things; that through the Church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the principalities and power in the heavenly places.  This was according to the eternal purpose which he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and confidence of access through all faith in him.  For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with might through his Spirit in the inner man, and that Christ my dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have power to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

The word of the Lord

ALLELUIA John 13:34
Alleluia. Take my yoke upon you, says the Lord; and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart.  Alleluia.

GOSPEL               
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew (Matthew 5:20-26)

Since it was the day of Preparation, in order to prevent the bodies from remaining on the cross on the Sabbath (for that sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away.  So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who had been crucified with him; but when they come to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. But one of the solders pierced his side with a spear, and at once here came out blood and water.  He who saw it has bone witness – his testimony is true, and he knows that he tells the truth – that you also may believe.  For these things took place that the Scripture might be fulfilled, “Not a bone of him shall be broken.” And again another Scripture says, “They shall look on him whom they have pierced.”

The Gospel of the Lord.
 

Today’s Reflection

The heart of Jesus was very much a human heart; he was familiar with all the emotions we experience: fear, doubt, joy, sadness, grief, anger, pain. But through all the joys and heartaches of being human, Jesus had one clear purpose, one mission: to love and serve God. Even though humanity does not deserve such love, he continues to love. It is this love that makes his heart sacred. We get distracted, busy, tempted by the love of money and the things money can buy: “Where our treasure is, there will our heart be also.” If our hearts are aglow with love of God, our actions will glorify him and by extension bring joy and peace to our brothers and sisters.

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