II Sunday of Ordinary Time

Por: Redacción Palabra Nueva

Palabra de Hoy
Palabra de Hoy

January 17, 2021

Missionary Childhood Day

“Speak, Lord, that your servant hears.”

Don’t you know that the body is a temple of the Holy Ghost, that it dwells in you and you have received from God?

Jesus turned and, seeing that he was being followed, asks, “What are you looking for?”


First Reading

Reading Samuel’s first book 3, 3b-10. 19

In those days, Samuel was lying in the temple of the Lord, where the Ark of God was located. Then the Lord called Samuel. He said, “Here I am.”
He ran to Eli and said, “Here I am, because you called me.”
He said, “I didn’t call you. Go back to bed.” He went and went to bed.
The Lord called Samuel again. Samuel got up, went to Eli and said:
“Here I am, because you called me.”
He said, “I have not called you, my son. Go back to bed.”
Samuel did not yet know the Lord, nor had the word of the Lord yet been manifested to him.
The Lord called Samuel, for the third time. He got up, went to Eli and said:
“Here I am, because you called me.”
Eli then understood that it was the Lord who called the young man. And he said to Samuel:
“Go to bed. And if he calls you again, say, ‘Speak, Lord, that thy servant hears.'”
Samuel went to bed instead.
The Lord introduced himself and called as the previous times, “Samuel, Samuel.”
Samuel replied, “Speak, let your servant listen.”
Samuel grew up. The Lord was with him, and He did not let any of his words be thwarted.


Exit 39, 2, and 4ab. 1. 8-9. 10

Here I am, Lord, to do your will.

I looked forward to the Lord; he bent down and heard my cry.
He put in my mouth a new canticle, a hymn to our God. R/.

You do not want sacrifices or offerings, and instead you opened my ear;
you don’t ask for burnt offerings or atoning sacrifices; then I say, “Here I am.” R/.

“-As it is written in my book — to do thy will.
Oh, my God, I love him, and I carry your law in my gut.” R/.

I have proclaimed your salvation before the great assembly;
I haven’t closed my lips, sir, you know that. R/.

Second Reading

Reading the 1st letter of St Paul to the Corinthians 6, 13c-15a. 17-20

The body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord, for the body. And God resurrected the Lord and will also resurrect us with His power.
Don’t you know that your bodies are members of Christ? He who joins the Lord is a spirit with him.
Run away from immorality. Any sin that man commits is left out of his body. But the fornicate sins against his own body. Don’t you know that the body is a temple of the Holy Ghost, that it dwells in you and you have received from God?
And they don’t belong, because they’ve been bought at a good price. Therefore, glorify God with his body!


Reading the Holy Gospel according to John 1, 35-42

At that time, John was with two of his disciples and, looking at Jesus passing by, he says, “This is the Lamb of God.”
The two disciples heard his words and followed Jesus. Jesus turned and, seeing that he was being followed, asks, “What are you looking for?”
They said, “Rabbi (meaning Master), where do you live?”
He said, “Come and see.”
Then they went, saw where he lived, and they stayed with him that day; it was like the tenth hour.
Andrew, brother of Simon Peter, was one of the two who heard John and followed Jesus; finds his brother Simon first and says:
“We have found the Messiah (meaning Christ).”
And he took him to Jesus. Jesus stared at him and said:
“You are Simon, the son of John; you will call yourself Cephas (which translates: Peter)”.


The Ordinary Time of the Liturgical Year begins, a new period in which the Church invites us, from the celebration of the Baptism of the Lord last Sunday, to set our eyes on Jesus Christ, with whom as Christians through baptism we must identify. And we do so as disciples, who constantly look and listen to the Master to learn from him.

In addition, today in the Church we celebrate missionary Children’s Day, under the motto: “With Jesus to Nazareth. We’re family.” The protagonists today are the children of our communities who feel the call to be missionaries of Jesus to help other children most in need with their prayer and with the contributions they raise. Once again we are reminded that in the Church, we are all missionaries, so are children.

In short, in today’s Word we discover the journey of faith to be traveled by each of us as Christians, disciples and missionaries of Jesus, baptized and sent in his name. Such an itinerary is a path that takes place in successive stages described in today’s texts, recurring stages that do not expire.

The first is the call, to which the answer follows. God calls us first. It is not we who have chosen Him but He who has first noticed us and called us by name. He’s known us forever. Sometimes he use his mediators, witnesses, someone who points the way for us, who teaches us to listen, like Eli with Samuel, or as John the Baptist with John and Andrew. And we, like Samuel, groping and babbling, confusing his voice with other voices, little by little, are gradually discovering who he is and what he wants. He wants us to listen to him. That’s the first thing and maybe the most important thing. The willingness to listen that the priest Eli suggests to young Samuel is the same as God Himself invites us to have with regard to Him. Listening requires time, silence, attention, resignations… but it’s worth it. Who better than the Author of life, the Creator of each of us, can tell us who we are and what we are here for? To his veiled or explicit call, in some or other circumstances, we must answer repeatedly: “Speak, Lord, that your servant hears.”

The next stage is the encounter. Listening and answering lead us to discover that God is someone alive, with a beating heart, whom we desire to know. The encounter with the living and true God is given to us in Christ, as happened to John and Andrew. Without personal encounter with Christ we can hardly know God well and be and live as authentic Christians. The Gospel preciously reflects what this first encounter was like and what all encounters with Christ are like. He invites us to think, to internalize: what are you looking for in life, what do you want to do with it, where do you want to go? And the response of the disciples, who had already set out to walk after Him, following in his footsteps, may also be ours: Master, where do you live?… that is, what is your life, what are your foundations, your principles, your consistency, your doctrine, what do you support your existence, the life you propose, the understanding of the human person? We certainly cannot be afraid to ask Christ. What’s more, He wants us to question each other as we question Him. The disciple’s way is sown with doubts and cannot consist of the simple unorised acceptance of truths and content. Doubting is not bad; the pernicious thing is to perpetuate in doubt.

After the meeting comes the follow-up. Christ says to the disciples, “Come and see.” Jesus wants us to make a way with Him; he does not think it is convenient or enough to explain to us to convince us or suddenly overflow with his truths. He wants us to follow in His footsteps and see with our own eyes, that is, that we lively experience who He is and what He calls us; that we stay with Him to share His own life and destiny because He wants to share ours. The “come and see” that Christ directs us to each one is a great challenge, a huge challenge. It demands renunciation and sacrifice. He also trusts in his word and patience to wait for what He wants to manifest to us to come. The disciple of Christ must be trusted and patient, sacrificed and light of luggage.

Finally, testimony arises from follow-up. “We have found the Messiah,” Andrew tells his brother Peter. He brought him before Jesus and Jesus changes his name, that is, transforms him into another person. And in Peter the path of the disciple is restarted: call, answer, encounter, follow-up, testimony. The disciple who vividly experiences the presence of Jesus, who is transformed by Him, becomes a mediator, a witness, so that others may also meet Him. Samuel becomes Eli, the apprentice becomes a teacher, the disciple becomes a missionary, the baptized one sent. That is why we say that the Church is missionary by nature and that all the baptized are called to evangelize, to be missionaries; also children, from their innocence and spontaneity, with their games and occupations, feeling the faith received in the family as personal and their own, perceiving that they are part of another great family, the Church, in which as children of God they occupy an irreplaceable place.

Anointed by the Holy Spirit, which we have received from God and who dwells in each of us, as temples of his that we are, we also want to say to the Father today, through Christ, from the depths of our hearts: “Here I am, Lord, to do your will”.


Speak Lord, may your servant listen.

From every corner, your voice is calling me. I feel your gaze in many eyes that look at me. I hear your word in a lot of screaming voices. And in those who need me, I see your outstretched hand.

Speak Lord, may your servant listen.

You’re the one asking me, “What are you looking for?” I look for you, my Lord, when I look at that hungry child or that exhausted mother with her son behind her back.

Speak Lord, may your servant listen.

I know of many men and women who do not hear your gospel, and of others who live in poverty and misery; and of many who steal, or even sell their bodies, so they can go on living. And they all yell at me not to live so peacefully.

Speak Lord, may your servant listen.

What can I do? I see children for those who have no place in school or adults without wanting to live because they find no meaning in life; I see men and women suffering in prisons or simply living without freedom. Also in all of them, and from every corner of the earth, your voice is calling me.

Speak Lord, may your servant listen.


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