“This is a great mystery, and I mean in reference to Christ and the Church.”
A reading from the Letter of Saint Paul to the Ephesians (Ephesians5:21-33)
Brethren: Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives, be subject to your husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the Church, his body, and is himself its Saviour. As the Church is subject to Christ, so let wives also be subject in everything to their husbands. Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the Church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that he might present the Church to himself in splendour, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. Even so husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no man ever hates his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, as Christ does the Church, because we are members of his body. “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” This is a great mystery, and I mean in reference to Christ and the Church; however, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.
The word of the Lord.
RESPONSORIAL PSALM psalm128:1-188.8.131.52 (R. 1a)
R/. Blessed are all who fear the Lord.
Blessed are all who fear the Lord
And walk in his way!
By the labour of your hands you shall eat.
You will be blessed and prosper. R.
Your wife like a fruitful vine
in the heart of your house;
your children like shoots of the olive
around your table. R.
Indeed thus shall be blessed
the man who fears the Lord.
May the Lord bless you from Sion.
May you see Jerusalem prosper
all the days of your life! R.
ALLELUIA Matthew 11:25
Alleluia. Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have revealed to little ones the mysteries of the kingdom. Alleluia.
“The seed grew and became a tree. ”
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke (Luke 13: 15-21)
At that time: Jesus said, “What is the kingdom of God like? And to what shall I compare it? It is like a grain of mustard seed which a man took and sowed in his garden; and it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air made nests in its branches.” And again he said, “To what shall I compare the kingdom of God? It is like leaven which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal, till it was all leavened.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
St Paul exhorts the people to observe love and fidelity in marriage as very important to the understanding of the union between Christ and the Church. A husband and wife imitate Christ in his love and fidelity for the church. They leave their own respective families to form a new unit where they give each other in unconditional love and fidelity. They are no longer two, but one flesh just as Christ is one with the Church and loves her unconditionally. In such a family of love there is mutual respect, spirit of sacrifice and stronger faith in God. St Paul’s exhortations are relevant for our times more than ever.