A reading from the Book of the Prophet Jonah (Jonah 3 :1-10)
The Ninevites turned from their evil way, and God repented.
The word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time, saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and proclaim to it the message that I tell you.” So Jonah arose and went to Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceedingly great city, three days’ journey in breadth. Jonah began to go into the city, going a day’s journey. And he cried, “Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be over thrown!” And the people of Nineveh believed God; they proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them to the least of them. Then tidings reached the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, removed his robe, and covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. And he made proclamation and published through Nineveh, “By the decree of the king and his nobles: Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste anything; let them not feed, or drink water, but let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and let them cry mightily to God; yes, let every one turn from his evil way and from the violence which is in his hands. Who knows, God may yet repent and turn from his fierce anger, so that we perish not?” When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil way, God repented of the evil which he had said he would do to them; and he did not do it.
The word of the Lord.
RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm130:1-2.3-4.7bc-8(R.3)
R/. If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand?
Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord,
Lord, hear my voice!
O let your ears be attentive
To the sound of my pleading. R/.
If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities,
Lord, who could stand?
But with you is found forgiveness,
that you may be revered. R/.
For with the Lord there is mercy,
in him is plentiful redemption.
It is he who will redeem Israel
from all its iniquities. R/.
ALLELUIA Luke 11:25
Alleluia. Blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it. Alleluia.
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke (Luke10:38-42)
Martha received him into her house. Mary has chosen the good portion.
At that time: Jesus entered a village; and a woman named Martha received him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. But Martha was distracted with much serving; and she went to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things; one thing is needful. Mary has chosen the good portion, which shall not be taken away from her.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
The people of Nineveh sin gravely but Jonah is sent to preach and convert them. He delivers a very harsh message: “Only forty days more and Nineveh will be destroyed.” His message touches the people and, with the king’s declaration, they seek God’s face through internal and external conversion. God shows mercy to Nineveh, but Jonah is not happy because they repent. He had refused to go before as he knew God to be merciful. God wants us to be saved. We need to seek him again and again whenever we stray from him. Once we notice we have strayed, let us quickly return to our loving, merciful father. Sin is always dangerous. Let us not harden our hearts when we see danger.