Readings and Reflection for November 29, Monday of the First Week of Advent

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FIRST READING
A reading from the Book of Isaiah (Isaiah 2:1-5)
The Lord will gather all nations in the eternal peace of the Kingdom of God.

The word which Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem. It shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and shall be raised above the hills; and all the nations shall flow to it, and many peoples shall come, and say: “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths. For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. He shall judge between the nations, and shall decide for many peoples; and they shall beat their swords into plough shares, and theirs pears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. O house of Jacob, come, let us walk in the light of the Lord.

The word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM   (Ps 122: 1-2.3-4ab.4cd-5.6-7.8-9 (R. sec 1)
R. Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.

I rejoiced when they said to me,
“Let us go to the house of the Lord.”
And now our feet are standing within
your gates, O Jerusalem. R/.

Jerusalem is built as a city
bonded as one together.
It is there that the tribes go up,
the tribes of the Lord. R/.

For Israel’s witness it is
to praise the name of the Lord.
There were set the thrones for judgement,
the thrones of the house of David. R/.

R. Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.

For the peace of Jerusalem pray,
“May they prosper, those who love you.”
May peace abide in your walls,
and security be in your towers. R/.

For the sake of my family and friends,
let me say, “Peace upon you.”
For the sake of the house of the Lord, our God,
I will seek good things for you. R/.

ALLELUIA  (Psalm 80:3b-4)
Alleluia. Come to save us, Lord our God;
let your face shine on us, and we shall be saved.
Alleluia.

GOSPEL
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew (Matthew 8:5-11)
Many will come from east and west and sit at table in the kingdom of heaven.

At that time: As Jesus entered Capernaum, a centurion came forward to him, begging him and saying, “Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, in terrible distress.” And he said to him, “I will come and heal him.” But the centurion answered him, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof; but only say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I am a man under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes, and to my slave ‘Do this,’ and he does it.” When Jesus heard him, he marvelled, and said to those who followed him, “Truly, I say to you, not even in Israel have I found such faith. I tell you, many will come from east and west and sit at table with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven.”

The Gospel of the Lord.

TODAY’S REFLECTION
“Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my servant will be healed”: these very powerful words of faith, a variant of which we continue to this day to pronounce in the Eucharistic liturgy, were words first found on the lips of one regarded by the Jews as a “Pagan”. Jesus himself marveled and confessed that he had not found such faith in all of Israel. The centurion’s example should speak to u in a special way: it should make us examine the sincerity of our faith in Christ. Has the church become for us a social gathering where we go to gain societal status? Are we more interested in people’s approval of our holiness, or do we really struggle to be holy?

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