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3rd Sunday of Year C – 2022

Listening to a speaker can be interesting, inspiring, or… frustrating.
The same can be said of listening to a preacher.
What makes the difference between inspiration and frustration?

You may think that some people are gifted speakers and others simply do not have this gift.
This is true, but there is something else that contributes to the result.
It is whether the person reaches the listeners personally –
reaches them by speaking of what touches them in their daily lives.

In today’s gospel, we see Jesus returning to “Nazareth where he had been brought up”. (Luke 1:1-4; 4:14-21)
Going to the synagogue on the sabbath, he is given the scroll and reads a text of Isaiah (Isaiah 61:1-2).
Then, giving back the scroll to the attendant, he sits down and starts preaching.

We are told:
“The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him.

The people listen with anticipation, with a feeling of expectation that what they will hear may be good for them.
Listening to Jesus, their hear him speak of the poor, the prisoners, the blind, the oppressed.
He promises good news, recovery of sight and liberation.
To all, he proclaims “the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Had you been there on that day in Nazareth, would you not have listened intently?
I know that I would not have wanted to miss a word!

Some may say: “Yes but… that was long ago, and those words were not addressed to us.”
True, Jesus is not visibly present to us, and we cannot hear him pronounce what he said on that day.
But this does not mean that “the Lord’s favor” is no longer available to us.

In fact, his favors are plenty and they reach us in our day-to-day living.
The discoveries of science, and the ‘miracles’ – literally so – worked in the field of medicine are among God’s ways of healing us and curing many of our diseases.

And among us, there are people with genuine compassion – meeting them helps us to free ourselves from guilt and negative feelings.
Other people have a true understanding of events and situations – they give us a clearer vision of what is happening around us.
Others still are spiritual guides – their wisdom enables us to find our way when we no longer see the direction our lives should take.
All of them are making God’s presence and help available to us in their own way.

Not all our needs are met and not all our ills are cured…
We know that they will be… one day, and this is why we live in HOPE of that day!


Note: Another reflection is available on a different theme in French at: https://image-i-nations.com/3e-dimanche-de-lannee-c-2022/


Source: Image: Quora


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